A middle aged man identified as Ifeanyi Nwafor, aged 29 years, slumped and died on Saturday as he was digging the grave of a dead elderly woman.
The ugly incident, which occurred in Onunwankwo village, Umuhuali community in Ishielu Local Government Area of Ebonyi State, caused confusion among residents.
Narrating the development to newsmen, a member of the ‘Youth Assembly’ in the area, Mr. Nonso Ekuma, said the deceased hailed from Azuegu village and was conspicuous in all the burial activities during the wake keep of the late woman known as Madam Alioke Mgbanya.
He said, “At dawn, the deceased, Ifeanyi Nwafor, participated in the digging of the grave for the burial of the old woman when he met his death.
“The deceased joined his mates in the drinking episode of the wake-keep till dawn, when they began to prepare the grave before the arrival of the parish priest to bury the dead woman as others equally took their turns,” he stressed.
Nwafor continued, “When Ifeanyi got into the grave with a digger, he dug two times and on the third round, he could not bring down the digger, but slumped and died in the grave.
He maintained that every effort made by sympathisers, including warming his feet with fire to see if he could be revived, proved abortive.
The deceased, Ifeanyi, was equally on Saturday at Azuegu village, Umuhuali.
Another eyewitness, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Southern City News that Ifeanyi was a driver.
He said a member of Ifeanyi family died similarly in 2016 while farming. He reportedly raised his hoe, slumped and died.
“The deceased was survived by a wife and two kids and all are resident in the community,” he disclosed.
Efforts to reach the Ebonyi State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Jude Madu, for confirmation was not successful as his telephone lines were not reachable.