The family of Senator Isiaka Adeleke, who died in a private hospital in Osogbo, capital of Osun State, penultimate week, has rejected a coroner’s inquest ordered by the state government.
Last week, Osun Government ordered a coroner’s inquest, to determine the cause of Adeleke’s death, who was the first civilian governor of the state.
Adeleke’s younger brother, who represented Osun West senatorial district till his death, Dr. Adedeji, who spoke on behalf of the family at the late lawmaker’s country home in Ede, yesterday, described the inquest as ill-advised, self-serving and coming at a time the family was trying to come to terms with the reality of his demise.
“Adeleke’s family, hereby denounces in its entirety, the ill-advised and self-serving coroner’s inquest ordered by Osun State Government purportedly set up to determine the cause of death of our dearly beloved senator Adeleke,” he said.
Dr. Adeleke also described the inquest as a ‘kangaroo’, and noted that it was an attempt by the government to politicise the senator’s death.
He also told newsmen that the family have been informed by “impeccable sources that the outcome of the inquest already has been predetermined by the state and designed to serve its own interest, with distorted facts and misinformation which will clearly not be in the interest of the people of Osun in general and the Adeleke family in particular.”
He also said the family had earlier ordered an autopsy because it remains the only scientific and globally acceptable means of objectively determining the cause of death, and insisted it looked forward to the report.
Dr. Adeleke called on the state government to explain to the people of the state why it was in a hurry to order a coroner’s inquest when the result of the autopsy ordered by the family was yet to be delivered to them.
He urged the people to discountenance it and added that the family had resolved not to participate or cooperate with what he described as ‘the kangaroo’ style panel set up by the state government. The businessman insisted the autopsy report must be released to no one else other than the Adeleke family, noting that doing otherwise would be tantamount to gross professional misconduct and would attract appropriate sanctions in law.
He also expressed hope that pathologists handling the autopsy “who we regard and recognise as eminent and thorough-bred practitioners would act according to their professional calling and oath by expeditiously concluding the autopsy and deliver the report to the Adeleke’s family.”
In its reaction, the state government, through the the Director of Bureau of Communication and Strategy in the Governor’s Office, Semiu Okanlawon, said the step taken was the most responsible and acceptable standard in any civilised society.
“The decision to institute an inquest into this sudden death was not to please or satisfy anyone at all. It was set up for the good of the society. We are all bereaved and mourning with the unfortunate death of one of our illustrious sons and most importantly, a former governor of our state.
“It would not be in the best interest and honour of the departed soul for the government to engage the family on a matter of this nature. It is, therefore, trite to state that the Adeleke family has the right to all the choices open to them, just as we are sure this is a matter that is already in the court of public opinion.”