Home Health & Lifestyle Junior Pope’s Death: Life-Jacket Could have Save Him And 4 Others

Junior Pope’s Death: Life-Jacket Could have Save Him And 4 Others

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Junior Pope didn't have to sacrifice his life - Ini Edo reacts to actor's death

Junior Pope
The tragic event has deeply affected the Nigerian film community and the nation, highlighting the critical need for stringent safety protocols on waterways. The incident occurred in Anam, located along the River Niger in Anambra State, as the actors were returning from a film set.

Junior Pope’s Death, An Avoidable Death And, One Too Many. Watch https://youtu.be/q7a43ITs1kg

The Nigerian film industry is in mourning after the loss of Nollywood star Pope Odonwodo, known as Junior Pope, and three other actors in a boating accident on the Anam River. Prior to the incident, Odonwodo had posted a video online, expressing his desire to return safely to his family, emphasizing the importance of life and his role as a father. Tragically, the actors were not wearing life jackets at the time of the accident, which has led to a broader discussion on the enforcement of safety measures on waterways. The film community and the nation mourn their loss, and filmmaker Samuel Olatunji shared the somber news, extending thoughts and prayers to the bereaved families. The incident underscores the vital need for strict adherence to safety protocols to prevent such heartbreaking events in the future.

In the wake of the incident, fans and colleagues of the late actors have taken to social media to express their grief and call for better safety standards in the entertainment industry.
PUNCH Healthwise also observed that people took to social media to criticise prominent producer, Adamma Luke, for not providing safety kits for the actor and others that tragically lost their lives.
A fan and Facebook user, Rihanna Maya, who described the incident as heartbreaking in her latest post, said that the incident could have been averted if safety cautions had been put in place.
She stated, “This could have been prevented if they had done this on a more professional platform; Not using a real river, like in Titanic. As big as the movie was, they didn’t shoot it in a real sea or ocean, everything was done in a pool.
“Second of all, they could have had medical personnel, ambulance, divers and some other SOS teams along with them in the shooting location. It is so sad though, how the director didn’t think of other safety rights before embracing such a journey, or is it that she doesn’t want to spend money as low as not affording a common life jacket?”
Another X user, Frank Nweke said, “The events leading up to these deaths are simply unacceptable and completely avoidable.

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“While we mourn with their family, friends, and colleagues, we must also address the lawlessness, nonchalance, and disregard for life by all the parties involved.
“The absence of safety measures while travelling by boat, the lack of first aid knowledge by the responders at the scene of the accident, the preposterous report that Junior Pope was taken to ritualists first when found to still be alive, and the vulturine behaviour of content creators to capture the entire ordeal are all indicators of the complexities of the Nigerian problem.
“We can only pray that this incident is jarring enough to effect the necessary changes in our approach to the regulation of public service, emergency response, and personal responsibility during emergencies.”
Reacting to the development, the Actors Guild of Nigeria swiftly took steps against Luke, suspending films featuring riverine locations indefinitely.
The AGN also made several strong moves, including putting a moratorium on films set in rivers.
Also, movie shoots nationwide have been suspended on Thursday, April 11.
Speaking on the development, A marine safety expert, Dr Taiwo Lawal noted that preventable tragedies like the Nollywood boat accident can be avoided if proper safety measures are taken, including the use of life jackets.
He explained that in cases of capsizing, life jackets can provide buoyancy and stability, which increases the chance of survival in rough waters.
According to him, tragedies like this highlight the importance of prioritising safety over entertainment and ensuring that all actors are equipped with the necessary safety gear when filming in dangerous environments.

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Meanwhile, this incident is not an isolated case as numerous incidents of boat mishaps across the country have resulted in massive loss of lives, bringing to question safety agencies’ commitment towards safety, especially on the nation’s waterways.
In January 2024, at least five passengers were killed when a boat capsized in Anambra State.
Also in January 2024, about 20 persons, including children were reportedly killed in a boat accident that occurred along the Andoni-Bonny coastal waters in Rivers State.
Similarly, three persons drowned after a boat ferrying 14 passengers capsized along the Ibeshe-Ikorodu channel of Lagos State in February 2024.
Meanwhile, the Chartered Institute of Transport Administration report revealed that over 200 people lost their lives as a result of boat accidents in seven states in 2023.
The institute said findings by CIOTA showed that the accidents occurred in Kwara, Calabar, Nasarawa, Adamawa, Sokoto, Kebbi and Ondo states.
The President of CIOTA, Segun Obayendo called for a national overview of the transport sector, stressing that it would define the structure, standard operating procedure, best practices, and compliance system in the transportation industry.

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