Posted by By Geoffrey Ekenna, Olalekan Adetayo and Adeola Balogun on
Hilda, wife of the slain Peoples Democratic Party governorship aspirant in Lagos State, Chief Funsho Williams....
Hilda, wife of the slain Peoples Democratic Party governorship aspirant in Lagos State, Chief Funsho Williams, on Tuesday slumped at the Williams‘s residence in Dolphin Estate, shortly after returning from the United Kingdom.
Hilda was taken away about 45 minutes later.
Also on Tuesday, police interrogation of the former Director-General of the National Maritime Authority, Mr. Festus Ugwu, continued at the Force Criminal Investigation Department Annex, Alagbon, Lagos.
Sources told our correspondents that one of the suspects that had been quizzed in connection with the killing of Williams mentioned a South-East governor in his statement.
Hilda, who was in London when her husband was killed on Thursday, fainted during a prayer session conducted by Bishop Lanre Obembe of El-Shadai Church, Dolphin Estate, Ikoyi, and another pastor simply identified as Dansu.
Hilda, who travelled to London on a visit to see her daughter, arrived at the 184B, Corporation Drive, Dolphin Estate, residence of the Williams at about 3.15pm in a navy blue Mercedes Benz salon car marked Lagos, GJ 641 KJA.
She was received by her son, Babatunde; Williams‘s elder brother, Femi, a retired brigadier general; and other family members.
In the car with her was a lady whose identity could not be confirmed.
Journalists were barred from entering the building until she settled down.
However, midway into the prayer session, she collapsed.
She was first attended to by two doctors before newsmen were told to leave the premises.
She was, however, revived and taken inside the main building before being driven out of the compound in the Mercedes Benz at about 4.40pm.
Hilda, who was dressed in a black outfit with dark sunglasses, had come into the compound sobbing.
As this event was unfolding in the Williams‘s residence, the police, less than one kilometre away at the FCID Annex, Alagbon, again quizzed Ugwu.
A deputy commissioner of police and an assistant commissioner of police quizzed Ugwu, whose removal was announced by the Federal Government earlier in the day.
Ugwu was reportedly queried by Williams four days before he was killed over a missing N550million from the coffers of the NMA.
Williams was the chairman of the NMA board before he was killed.
The police have so far quizzed nine directors of the NMA board - both executive and non-executive.
Also on Tuesday, it was learnt that one of the suspects so far quizzed named a South-East governor in his statement on how the fund was used.
The suspect, who is still being held, reportedly wrote in his statement that part of a certain sum of money that led to the face-off between him and Williams was actually used to fund a major political event in the South-East in December 2005.
And in order to ensure the safety of the suspects in detention, the police have beefed up security at the FCID Annex.
Stern-looking riot policemen have been drafted to provide security at the entrance.
They turned back commercial motorcyclists plying the area from having access to the offices located down the street.
A police source told our correspondent on the phone that the security beef-up became necessary in view of the personalities being held in connection with the murder.
Despite this, the reception of the FCID was a beehive of activities on Tuesday as our correspondent observed that the detainees were allowed to receive approved visitors.
Meanwhile, sympathisers continued to troop to the house of the Williams on Tuesday.
Among notable Nigerians who visited the Williams on Tuesday were the Governor of Imo State, Chief Achike Udenwa; a former Attorney-General of the Federation, Prince Bola Ajibola; a former Minister of Housing, Mrs. Mobolaji Osomo; and a former Minister of Finance, Dr Kalu Idika Kalu.
Others are: PDP governorship aspirants in Lagos State, Dr. Adedeji Aganga-Williams and Mr. Owolabi Salis; former Chief of General Staff, Commodore Ebitu Ukiwe; and the Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, Anthony Cardinal Olubunmi Okogie.
Udenwa, who arrived at about 1.25 pm, described the killing of the politician as shocking and out of tune with modern political realities.
He charged the police to work towards ensuring that such a thing did not occur again through the arrest of the killers of Williams.
Udenwa added, ”I do not see anything anybody could gain by taking away the life of others because if it is not the will of God, you will not have it.
”But if it is His wish, you will have it.
”Funsho was a gentleman politician.
”It gives us food for thought that he died in this manner.”
Ukiwe said that there was the need for the government to firm up security in the country and to prevent a recurrence.
He said, ”As far as I am concerned, this is madness.
”This thing should be wiped out from our system.
”It must be annihilated from our body polity. It has to be done.
”Anybody that becomes the president must work towards wiping out this type of terrible politics.
”Whether it is in politics or not, this type of thing has to be wiped out completely.”
Okogie, who declined to speak with journalists, wrote in the condolence register, ”A bright star has fallen and what a fall.
“The nation has lost a gentle soul.
“Who replaces him?
“You alone know, oh God!
“His death is a bad omen for democracy.
“2007 is still far away.
“Lord, deliver us from sudden death.”
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