Defence & Security

Family Seeks Justice, Probe of Nigerian Student’s Death in Ukraine 

By Onyebuchi Sampson

The family of a 19-year-old Nigerian student, Fadlullah Agboluaje, who allegedly died in mysterious circumstances, is calling for an investigation into his sudden death in Ukraine a few days after leaving Nigeria.

The family’s quest for justice has received a boost with 8,460 people signing a petition initiated by one Christopher Juwah to compel Ukrainian and Nigerian authorities to unravel the mysteries surrounding Agboluaje’s death.

In an urgent appeal, the family is urging Lviv Polytechnic National University in Ukraine to tell them how the healthy 19-year-old died.

The appeal is titled: ” Tell us the truth about the death of my 19 years old Son in Ukraine.”A helpless Mother’s cry.”

Narrating the incident, a sibling of the deceased said: “My mum was with him at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Nigeria, before he traveled from Nigeria on Saturday, January 8, 2022, and landed in Ukraine on Sunday, January 9, 2022.

“He was picked up from the airport by a Lviv Polytechnic National University representative to the school’s accommodation facility, on the same day, January 9, 2022.

“On getting to the room assigned to him, he wasn’t happy with the way it looked and my mum told him to request a change of room.

“So, he went to the front desk of the accommodation facility to report to the personnel on duty, unfortunately, the person didn’t understand English, so he ended up reaching out to the liaison officer, in the undersigned agent on the letter the school sent before he left for Ukraine.

“This man asked my brother to see him in the morning the following day by 7:00 a.m. My mum chatted with my brother up until 11(p.m.), Nigeria time on Sunday, January 10, 2022.

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“Then on Monday, we didn’t hear from my brother, all his calls were going through, messages were dropping, but no responses at all. My mum began to panic and reached out to different people for help, up to the afternoon we got no response. Then it struck her that she copied the number of the liaison officer on the letter. So, she reached out to him.

“Later that afternoon, he stopped responding to calls, keeping us in the dark. He ended up picking up his calls later that evening and then gave a student in that accommodation facility the phone to break the news that my brother was found dead on the floor of his room.

“It was a big shock! My brother left Nigeria very healthy. He took a COVID-19 test on the 7th of January and tested negative. He got the full COVID-19 vaccination, took his yellow fever vaccine, ran a complete health check at our family hospital and the results came out fine.

“After we got the news, we began to ask this liaison officer to send us his picture if truly he’s dead. He didn’t do so until early evening on Tuesday, January 11, 2022. I couldn’t look at the picture until Wednesday, 12, 2022, because I just couldn’t look at my younger brother’s corpse.

“As an older one, you always want to fend for your younger siblings. It hurt so much to look at the picture but my mind needed to have a grasp of the evidence. I looked at the picture on my uncle’s phone and my brother looked asleep in the blue shirt, he wore from Nigeria as seen in the picture, fully buttoned up and in a blue thick furred coat.

“They haven’t sent us another picture of my brother’s dead body until now.”

The family is asking for an official autopsy report claimed to have been done by the institution.

They are also worried about why Lviv Polytechnic National University has not contacted or reached out to them, wondering if the deceased was not their responsibility, having already been in the school’s territory.

The family also wants Nigeria’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, its Embassy in Ukraine, and the Ukraine Embassy to tell them what happened and what was done to justify their duty of care for the student.

They further called for answers from the school about what happened to their son and not to be kept in the dark.

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