Gbadebo Richard, a student of the University of Ibadan (UI), has died after slipping into a soap-making machine at a factory owned by Henkel Nigeria Limited, manufacturers of WAW detergent and bar soap.
The 300-level student of European studies at the institution, was said to have enrolled for the holiday job as an operator at the company, amid the coronavirus pandemic which had led to closure of schools.
But on Monday, the 21-year-old, who was on night shift at the company located at Oluyole in Ibadan, mistakenly fell into the machine, which crushed him to death in the process.
It was gathered that his colleagues at work were not aware of the situation until they saw blood gushing out from one end of the machine.
In a series of tweets on its social media page, the company expressed sadness over the incident.
The company also dismissed allegations from some quarters that it initially kept mute over Richard’s death, explaining that it had already reached out to his family.
“The tragic incident shakes us and we assure you that we will do everything we can to clarify its cause. Our deepest sympathy goes to Richard’s family. We are in contact with them and will provide the necessary support in this difficult time,” it wrote in one of the tweets.
Out of respect, we do not make any further statement. We apologize for the late reaction. It was important for us to personally console his family before we comment on the incident on public channels. (2/2)
— Henkel (@Henkel) July 29, 2020
“Out of respect, we will not make any further statement at this time. It was important for us to personally console his family before we comment on the incident on public channels.”
The student’s death has since sparked an outrage on social media with many Nigerians calling on relevant authorities to ensure the matter is thoroughly investigated.
The deceased’s father was said to have gathered the remains of his son shortly after the incident and buried him on Wednesday.
Efforts by TheCable Lifestyle to get reaction on the case from Fadeyi Olugbenga, spokesman of the Oyo state police command, were unsuccessful as he did not pick calls or reply text message sent to his telephone.
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