Chief Dumo Lulu-Briggs

Widow of the Founder of Moni Pulo Limited, High Chief Olu Benson Lulu-Briggs, Seinye on Monday blamed her step-son over the delay in the release of his father’s body and also the inability of the family to so far bury him.

In her latest reaction to her step-son’s recent stance in the media space, Seinye through her spokesperson, Oraye St. Franklyn said Dumo’s move to petition the IG over alleged refusal by his stepmother to release the deceased body contradicts the agreement reached at the IGP’s meeting which was for all parties to withdraw all pending suits in court in order to facilitate the immediate burial of the late High Chief.

The statement reads, “The statement by Dumo Lulu-Briggs arising from a meeting in Abonnema on Saturday, 15th February 2020 that he would write a petition to the Inspector General of Police over what he termed the refusal of his stepmother Dr. Mrs. Seinye O. B. Lulu-Briggs to abide by an agreement she voluntarily entered into on the withdrawal of all suits stopping the burial of High Chief Dr. O. B. Lulu-Briggs, is seen as a welcomed development. This is because such a petition when written, signed and delivered would clearly contradict the agreement reached at the IGP’s meeting which was for all parties to withdraw all pending suits in court in order to facilitate the immediate burial of the High Chief and ensure his autopsy report, which Dumo had been blocking was released.

“The Inspector-General of Police’s intervention was for all parties to consider the legacy of the High Chief and accord him the respectable funeral that he deserved. This was why he also insisted on receiving the report of the autopsy. The IGP in the cause of that meeting acknowledged that the Nigerian Police was part of the autopsy process. It is important to note that this is an incontrovertible fact that Dumo had been misleading the public on.

“However, in contravention of the IGP’s appeal, Dumo is still pursuing a personal inquest based on an Order he unlawfully procured in clear disregard of the position of the Ghanaian Police that the autopsy was done according to standard.

“It is also instructive to note that Dumo Lulu-Briggs while refusing to comply with the High Court-imposed preconditions on the release of his father’s body for burial, one of which is the involvement of his stepmother in the burial plans of her husband, wrote to her lawyers seeking to take custody of her husband’s body on the 18th and 19th of February 2020 without serving them with either the mandatory High Court-imposed undertakings by the family by custom led by him or with both Parties working on any burial plans as stipulated in the 23rd December 2019 High Judgment. He is doing these while also demanding another autopsy on his father and mischievously condemning the autopsy he instigated to be done on his father that he fully participated in.

“Dumo Lulu-Briggs has also refused to subject himself to the intervention being brokered by the Rivers State Governor through the Amayanabo of Abonnema, which is aimed at giving his father a well deserved State burial. Dumo said on a live radio Programme monitored on Rhythm 93.7FM’s Viewpoint on Saturday 15th February 2020 that he alone would be responsible for the burial of his father and not the committee setup on the Governor’s intervention to broker a truce and bury the late nationalist. Dr. Mrs. Seinye O. B. Lulu-Briggs has since assured the committee of her cooperation and remains open to their intervention.

“With all these setbacks being personally instigated by Dumo Lulu-Briggs against his father’s burial along with his misrepresentation of the outcome of the meeting with the IGP, it is believed that the IGP will have no trouble seeing through the clear mischievous intent of Dumo Lulu-Briggs in further delaying the burial of his father and being sensationally dishonest with the facts in public. He does all these while also trying to arm-twist his step mother to discountenance her husband’s Last Will and Testament that confirmed his bequest of most of his estate to a Trust he set up in his lifetime for the benefit of his children and their children’s children.

“Dr. Mrs Seinye Lulu-Briggs states categorically that the body of her husband will only be released to the family by custom led by Dumo Lulu-Briggs as contained in the 23rd December High Court judgment and upon Dumo’s complete compliance with that judgment. She maintains that the body of her husband will not be released to Dumo alone as he wishes because the High Court judgment was very specific as to its preconditions.

It is also false and contrived to mislead the public that after the 11th February 2020 dismissal of Dumo’s appeal at the Supreme Court to block the release of the autopsy report, his stepmother has gone back to court with a fresh case. For the avoidance doubt, nothing of such has happened. What she did was to apply for an injunction to restrain Dumo from obtaining her husband’s body without fulfilling the court imposed preconditions on him and while he is also pursuing his unlawful inquest. If anyone has a matter in court, it is Dumo and it is important to emphasize that as long as he continues to violate the High Court order and pursuing his illegally procured order for inquest he would be restrained from accessing the body of her husband.

“Dumo Lulu-Briggs is therefore urged to fast track his petition to the IGP in order to facilitate the prompt closure of the matter and allow for the immediate burial of a man who touched humanity in so many beautiful ways; a man who truly deserves better than he is getting from a son who claims to love him so dearly. It is hoped that Dumo’s petition will also include a burial date for his father since it was part of what the IGP demanded at that meeting.