In Bauchi, two pregnant women collapsed and died while waiting to be screened by the Verification Team from the office of the Account General of the state government, yesterday, March 5.
The two pregnant women (names withheld) were among the over 6,000 teachers in the state that were asked to assemble at the state local government education secretariat for screening before collecting their salaries.
News gathered by our correspondent, reported an eyewitness, Abubakar Yusuf, a teacher at the Baba Didi primary school said the verification exercise triggered congestion. According to him the first woman who was seven months pregnant, fainted out of suffocation from the pushing crowd waiting to be verified.
“Because we have not been paid for three months. People came from all the local government areas of the state, so there was a massive crowd that gathered at the venue.
“The verification exercise took us by surprise because we were in the classroom teaching when we were summoned for the screening. That was why there was a large turn-out of people.
“Some of the people who came early were lucky enough to be verified, but as the crowd kept increasing, people began to push each other. In the process, the pregnant woman fainted and went into a comma.
“Another pregnant woman also collapsed and had a miscarriage instantly. The two pregnant women were rushed to the hospital for treatment. We later heard that they died.”
Yusuf expressed discontentment with the exercise, calling on the state government to ease the sufferings of teachers by proffering another alternative method for the verification exercise, that will not lead to congestion of centres and to avoid such tragic incident from ever occurring again.
He described the verification scheme as excruciating for their age and health conditions.