The family of former Senate President in the Second Republic, late Hon. Dr. Joseph Wayas, has refuted the claim made by the eldest son of the family, Joseph Wayas Jr. in some sections of the media, that the late politician died as a result of poverty, saying the the claim was untrue.
In a statement released by the other children of the late former Senate President, they said their dad died in London as a result of ill-health, adding that it was unfortunate that Joseph Wayas Jr. (otherwise known as Joey) would outrightly make such an embarrassing statement about their father dying from poverty.
“The allegations made in the media about our father’s financial status before his death are false and baseless and are the handiwork of the 2 eldest children who feel entitled to funds from the government,” the children said.
They said following the passage of their dad in London, the Cross River State government in conjunction with the family, set up a burial committee and released sufficient funds to ensure that the late former Senate President was given a befitting funeral.
They stated that their father was flown abroad in August of 2019, with the assistance of the Federal Government of Nigeria, when their father’s health took a severe downturn and needed specialised intensive medical attention, and that the eldest son, Joey, who received the financial aid from the government misappropriated the funds for his personal use as he has failed to give proper account of how the funds were used for the benefit of their father’s health and upkeep.
“If our father was poor, how could he have provided for us, his children, until we became adults, but most especially our eldest brother who has been fed and lived under his father’s roof his entire life to this present day?
“It is wrong to say the eldest daughter, Donna, bore the cost of our father’s treatment while alive, and maintaining our late father’s corpse, when adequate provision was made by the federal and state governments for his up-keep while in England. Also, at the point of his demise, a senior family member stepped in and made adequate provision for his remains to be repatriated immediately to Nigeria, but due to reasons best known to the 2 eldest children, they decided not to relinquish their possession of our late father’s remains, and rather, solicit for more funds from the government and other well-meaning Nigerians, in exchange for their father’s corpse.
“If this is not the case, why are they withholding the corpse of our late father and refusing to communicate, even after the family has availed them the needed logistics to bring back our father’s remains?,” they added.
The Wayas family, while thanking the Federal and Cross River State Governments for their commitment and assistance, further prevailed on them not to stay aloof from the family’s plight but to ensure that his remains are brought back to Nigeria.
They also said that as a family, they have tried to make the two eldest siblings see reason with them to no avail.
“We wish to also state that our father meritoriously served our motherland as the Senate President, lived a fulfilled life, and should be accorded the due respect he deserves even in death,” they stated.
Recall that the late Joseph Wayas died in London at the age of 80.