Skye Bank man­ager, brother drown dur­ing pic­nic

The Punch - - METRO - Sam­son Fo­larin

The Man­ager of Skye Bank Plc, Abak Road Branch, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Ubong Ekpe, is dead. PUNCH Metro learnt that Ubong, who was mar­ried with chil­dren, drowned along with his brother, Fran­cis, at the Ibeno Beach, Iwuokpom com­mu­nity, in the Ibeno Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Area of the state.

Our cor­re­spon­dent gath­ered that the brothers had gone to the beach for a pic­nic on Sun­day with Ubong’s four chil­dren and wife.

Ubong was said to have en­tered into the beach to swim.

There was anx­i­ety when he did not sur­face from the wa­ters.

Fran­cis, who at­tempted to save him by also div­ing into the beach, was re­ported to have drowned as well.

There was panic around the beach when ef­forts to save the men proved abortive.

The re­mains of the vic­tims were said to have been re­cov­ered in the early hours of Mon­day.

A source said, “They went to catch fun at the beach on Sun­day. They were eat­ing when Ubong went in­side the beach to swim. But he did not sur­face. his brother plunged in to res­cue him, but got drowned as well.”

The Chair­man of the Ibeno

LGA, Mr. Ifum Udoh, told The News Agency of Nige­ria that the author­i­ties were work­ing to pre­vent re­cur­ring loss of lives at the beach, adding that the state gov­ern­ment had con­cluded plans to take over the beach.

The state Po­lice Pub­lic Re­la­tions Of­fi­cer, Odiko Mac­don, con­firmed the deaths to our cor­re­spon­dent, adding that the in­ci­dent hap­pened around 8.30pm.

He said, “The Skye Bank man­ager, his chil­dren and wife went to Ibeno Beach to have fun. Sadly, he got drowned. His brother died while try­ing to save him. The fam­ily ini­tially did not re­port the in­ci­dent. Their bod­ies floated and the fam­ily took them to Uyo. There is no sus­pi­cion of foul play.”

Our cor­re­spon­dent gath­ered that the Ekpe fam­ily were mem­bers of the St. An­thony’s Par­ish, Ewet Hous­ing.

The late Ubong, who was said to be a phi­lan­thropist, was re­ported to be the owner of a foot­ball bet­ting cen­tre on Udo Umana Street.

The Head, Cor­po­rate Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, Skye Bank Plc, Mr. Rasheed Bo­lar­inwa, while con­firm­ing the re­port, said the bank paid a con­do­lence visit to the fam­ily on Mon­day.

“Another visit is planned for to­mor­row, Wed­nes­day, April 11, while a con­do­lence let­ter on be­half of the man­age­ment has been dis­patched to the fam­ily as well.

“Ad­di­tion­ally, the bank will be sup­port­ing the fam­ily with some burial ben­e­fits for the burial rites in line with our pol­icy,” he added.

A check on Ubong’s Face­book wall showed that he was last ac­tive on the so­cial me­dia plat­form on Oc­to­ber 30, 2017.

On the date, he posted a stu­dio photo of him­self, with many of his friends com­mend­ing his out­fit.

Some of the friends fawned over him, say­ing he could be­come the next Gover­nor of the Cen­tral Bank of Nige­ria or the fu­ture Gover­nor of Akwa Ibom State, which he ac­knowl­edged with thanks.

The praises turned to trib­utes when it dawned on the friends that he was dead.

“This is just so sad. You were en­vi­able in so many ways. RIP man,” one Ak­abuokwu Kings­ley com­mented.

Another Face­book user, Pe­ter Asan­gusung, de­scribed the de­ceased as a good ad­viser.

“You were a bless­ing to all around you. You were a big brother and a good ad­viser, al­ways telling me to be hard­work­ing, but care­ful in life,” he wrote.

• Ubong

Pho­tos: Face­book

• Fran­cis

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.