One Mysterious Death Too Many


Although Lagos, an African modern mega city is associated with different kinds of tales woven around the good, bad and ugly,  the sudden and mysterious death of VGC Estate Chairman Gahin Mbelu whose body was found motionless within the posh estate in Lagos has sent tongues wagging in the state.

The residents of the estate who saw him earlier in the day looking hale and hearty are not oblivious that life is temporary and that death is inevitable. But their apprehension has to do with the mysterious nature of Mbelu’s death. 

The bewildered residents who spoke with LEADERSHIP Sunday said they know sudden death as a result of suicide, road crashes or other transport disasters,  drowning falling, fire, or other tragedies are common in the state, saying the government must help them unravel whether Mbelu’s death was as a result of undiagnosed advanced terminal illnesses such as advanced cancer, sudden natural causes like heart attack, brain hemorrhage, cot death, murder, war, or terrorism. 

His demise had since opened another book and the quest to find out the reason for his untimely death with calls to relevant authorities to keenly investigate the sudden death.

The 42-year-old banker and Chairman of Victoria Garden City estate, Mr. Gihan Mbelu had lived the life that some people desire as attested to by those who had encounters with him in one of the rich, topmost neighborhoods where he presided as their estate chairman. 

A resident of the estate who simply gave his name Mr. Jude attested to the fact that he implemented transformation policies for better harmonious living and improved security networks around the estate community , saying he was held in high esteem by residents from both the old and young. 

‘’ Yes, one of the most inevitable things that mankind cannot escape from struck recently in the estate, our chairman who was just the 42-year-old, Mr. Mbelu, was found dead in the driver seat of his car on Friday, April 27th around 10:10 AM in the estate. To us his death is strange. We want his death probed further. 

‘’ When one ponders about the wave of sudden death in our society these days , I feel something needs to be done , people cannot not just die like that and the cause of their deaths are not known. This unfortunate event has brought to the fore how Nigerians, prominent or not have lost their lives and this should be of concern to our society at large.’’

One thing that was evident in the estate when LEADERSHIP Sunday visited the estate was the sad mood the death of their leader had plunged the gated community into. The residents though sad but were not ready to divulge much about the circumstances surrounding the discovery of the lifeless body as they said it has become that of the law enforcement agencies to handle. 

A few of the residents who spoke on condition of anonymity about the demise of the VGC chairman were too cautious as they alluded to his untimely demise to some sort of mystery they wished could be unraveled by the law enforcement agency. 

Another resident, who gave his name as Daniel disclosed that it was an untimely death,  that claimed the life of a young, vibrant, and fit person that he could not fathom that he was gone so soon. 

“For me, he died under mysterious circumstances and I bet people aren’t willing to talk about it, even after the sad discovery of his death that day” 

A female elderly resident described him as a man of collectives and a true community person.

“The death of Mbelu is just too devastating. It is difficult to comprehend. I am still hoping I would wake up from a kind of nightmare and discover that this is not happening as this is a person some of us are fond of.

Another resident Mr. Peter remarked he had close contact with him saying, “ He was magnanimous to help squash any melee in the estate community without bias or prejudice, respectful to the young and old, and an exceptional leader” he averred.

While there is no one ready to give a first-hand account of events that transpired after the unfortunate discovery of his motionless body in his vehicle on Friday 27th April 2024, one of the private security officials manning the entry point of the estate said though, he was not on duty on the day the estate chairman was found dead, that the security supervisor is in a better place to reveal the events surrounding the discovery of Mbelu’s death.

Though stern warning had been given to all the security personnel not to discuss any information about the demise to anyone, they disclosed off record that the man said to be a half-caste as his father was from one of the states in the South East, while his mother is a foreigner, was seen in the early hours of the fateful day he died moving into the estate and greeting friends and well-wishers, happily.

They said he later drove towards a popular restaurant inside the estate called ‘Swiss Restaurant,’ parked his SUV outside their gate and proceeded inside to buy a bottle of soft drink and bottled water.

He also was seen strolling into his car but he did not drive out. They said the deceased, who also owns properties around the highbrow area of the state, used to shuttle between Victoria Garden Estate and Ikoyi, where members of his family reside.

According to them, he reportedly came from Ikoyi to VGC and moved to the restaurant, where he bought the drinks and later retired to rest inside his car.

The restaurant employees said they observed that on this particular day he parked his car outside the gate instead of parking a particular space inside the restaurant where he parked his car.

They subsequently approached the car only to see that the owner was inside but on further scrutiny, the security man also observed that the person inside was lifeless.

Then they raised the alarm and people were invited and after further observation and hard knocks around the car without response from the person inside, the police and the estate guards were invited. They later forced open the car only to discover that the person inside was lifeless.

On the causes of such mysterious deaths, a physician Dr.  Emmanuel Nkanu disclosed that it is high time that Nigerians pay close attention to their health and physical well-being.

He remarked that a lot of sudden deaths could be stress-related leading to cardiac arrest and asthmatic cases leading to death.

“I will advise that we check our blood pressure as High BP leads to death, if there is foaming from the mouth it’s an indication of HBP and if there is swelling around the neck and face it indicates an Asthmatic attack. Moreover, low blood pressure leads to death as well, as this does not show any sign as the body remains the same. 

Dr. Nkanu posited that a comprehensive autopsy will show the actual cause of the death as organs in the body will be examined for this purpose. 

While nothing can be done for now about the death, it is imperative that people pay more attention to their health by exercising. Medical experts say eating well and resting well will play an important role in the overall well-being of people, just as the case of sudden death is seen as becoming too many in our society.

Sources from the Lagos State Police Command confirmed that plans are in top gear to conduct an autopsy on the body of the deceased to unravel the cause of his death.

Our correspondent learnt that the case of the tragic death of Gihan Mbelu has been transferred to the State Criminal Investigations and Intelligence Department, SCIID, Panti, Yaba.

The police have spread their dragnet to unravel the mystery surrounding the tragedy by carrying out an autopsy test.

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