It was a gory sight as the body of a 50-year-old man, identified as Chief Ekanem Edet, dangled from a rope tied to the roof of his room at Mbiabong Itam in Itu Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State.
Vanguard learned that Ekanem Edet, former Secretary of the Mbiabong Village Council, popularly called Jolly Boy, waited until his wife and two sons went out before taking his life, allegedly leaving a suicide note in which he blamed his action on harsh economic condition.
According to a close family source, the deceased, in the suicide note, blamed government for inflicting unbearable pains and hardship on Nigerians. A close associate of the deceased, Mr. Okon Effiong, told newsmen that Ekanem Edet was discovered dead by his friend, who went to visit him.
He added that Edet was immediately buried after some traditional rites of passage were performed. He said: “He was a very sociable man and always shared his thoughts on issues. I do not know why he should consider suicide as the last option to escape from these hard times.” Vanguard further learned that few days to his death, the deceased complained bitterly about the current economic crunch.
According to a family source, “Edet took his life, blaming his action on the prevailing hardship.” The source added that the deceased, who deals on Ogogoro, cigarettes and other stimulants, decided to take his life when it appeared that he could no longer run his small family with the meagre earnings from his trade.
A pastor at the local church recalled: “He used to complain that his petty business was no longer fetching him and his family basic needs such as food, clothing and fees for the children’s education. “He was always blaming government for the economic policies that do not allow him afford basic commodities such as gari, bread, yam, rice, beans, oil, kerosene and other essential goods.” According to him, the family was reluctant to call in the police because of the suicide note.