The management of Agete Luxury Hotel has said that it was untrue that it has a hand in the death of a female guest in its facility.
A 21-year-old lady, Esther Isaac, was last week reported to have been allegedly murdered at the hotel in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
The brother to the deceased, Emmanuel Isaac, had claimed that the hotel management allegedly mounted pressure on him to accept the sum of N500,000 for the burial arrangements of his sister and forget about the case.
But reacting to the claims, the Hotel in a statement issued on Saturday, described the claims as untrue and a sheer campaign calculated at discrediting it.
The statement was signed on behalf of the Management of Agete Luxury Hotel by the Media Consultant, Mr Babajide Iletogun.
The statement described the claims of the brother of the deceased that the management of the hotel offered him N500,000 to suppress information on the death of his sister as a “reckless and deliberate falsehood.”
Giving a detailed account of the incident, the statement said, “On Friday 25th February 2022, two guests, a male and a female came into our Hotel between 10am and 11am in the morning. They asked of rooms and the rooms were shown to them by the Porter. After examining the rooms, they picked room 901. The male guest filled the registration form with the name Chukwuemeka Michael and paid the sum of N9,000.00 (Nine Thousand Naira only) being the charge for the room.
“On Saturday 26th of February, 2022, one of our Porters got from the receptionist, the list of each of the rooms that were sold out on the 25th of February 2022 with a view to checking out guest from their rooms and also find out the rooms that were going to be retained. On getting to the last floor, the Porter came back with a complain that rooms 908, 910 and 901 were not responding to his knocks.
“So, he was told by the receptionist to give the occupants some time. After some time, he went and knocked repeatedly and still there was no response. Out of curiosity he turned the knob of the door of room 901 and discovered that it was not securely locked.
“So, he peeped and saw the lady lying on the bed and he said ‘hello it’s time for check out, are you retaining the room? Yet there was no response. He then ran down to inform the receptionist of the development who in turn escalated the matter to the Hotel supervisor.”
The statement explained further that the Hotel supervisor upon receiving the information put a call to the Hotel Managing Director and told her what happened in the hotel.
The Managing Director who was said to have expressed shock about the development immediately directed the supervisor to go to the police and report the matter.
The statement continued, “Immediately, the supervisor went to the Gwarinpa Police Station and reported and he was asked to write a statement.
“He returned to the hotel with two policemen and that was when they entered the room and saw the lifeless body of the lady. The policemen requested that a photographer should take the pictures of the deceased,
“While the photographer took the pictures, there were two phones beside the lady and her bag was also beside her and calls kept coming in. One of the policemen picked the calls and those on the call said they were her friends.
“The policeman told them that their friend was unconscious and that they should come to the hotel, So. at that point, the policemen waited for the friends who kept saying they were coming. The wait lasted till evening and they didn’t come. It was at that point that the police took the corpse to the mortuary at Kubwa General Hospital at about 10pm.
“When they got there, three of her friends (two ladies and one male) joined them there at the hospital and then the police collected a card, where a Medical Doctor examined and certified her dead.
“Thereafter, the doctor came, took the information and gave it to the Registrar and then, the corpse was moved from the hospital to the mortuary. It was at this point that the friends opened the corpse and saw the deceased and started crying.
“After that, the friends were asked to write down their names and sign which they did. At that point, calls were still coming into the deceased’s phone but the policemen said they had to be careful on how they received her calls.
“But the calls kept coming and one of the policemen picked and a boy named Isaac Emmanuel said he is the brother of the deceased. The police told him what happened and asked him to come to Abuja. The boy told the police that they should not put his sister in the mortuary and that his sister is going to wake up. The mortuary attendant said if they don’t put the corpse in the mortuary, it will decompose.
“The policemen asked the brother of the deceased when he was coming to Abuja and he said it was going to be the next day. He wanted to travel by road the next day which was 27th of February but the Police asked that he should come by air and the money for the flight ticket was to be sent to him by the hotel, since he complained that he didn’t have much with him.
“So, the following day, Sunday, 27 th February, when he arrived, he was lodged in a hotel in Gwarinpa with all the expenses paid by the management of Agete Hotel.
On February 28th, which was the next day, we met him at Gwarinpa Police Station. The police took him to the morgue in Kubwa and we met the mortuary attendant who took us to see the corpse.
“The brother of the deceased put a church pamphlet on the sister’s body and started praying. After that, we were told to pay for the embalming of the corpse and the brother was there when that was done.
“It would be seen from the above, that the insinuations of complicity of Agete Hotel in the demise of Esther Isaac are not only unfair but smack of a calculated attempt to blackmail our Hotel.
“Indeed it is a reckless and deliberate falsehood by the brother of the deceased to claim that Agate Hotel offered the sum of N500,000.00 (Five Hundred Thousand Naira only) to him to suppress information about the death of his sister. Nothing could be farther from the truth, because nothing of such was ever offered to him.
“Also, it is worthy to mention that the CCTV in the Hotel was faulty since January 2022 and all efforts by our technicians to restore it before the incident did not yield result. To that effect, the Hotel management could not have deliberately denied anyone access to it as insinuated by the brother of the deceased.
While condoling with the family of the deceased, the Hotel management said it would cooperate with the Police to ensure that the perpetrators of the dastardly act is brought to book.
It added, “Nevertheless, we join the family and friends to mourn a beautiful life that was taken too soon, and we will as a socially responsible corporate entity, continue to cooperate with the Police and the Authorities to extensively conduct and carry out their investigations on this matter.”