Nigerians on social media have reacted to the military aircraft’s airlifting to their home towns of the remains of corps members who recently died in a road accident.
Many social media users described it as “hypocrisy” and “medicine after death” treatment.
Corps members are Nigerian graduates partaking in a mandatory one-year service to the country under the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
On Wednesday, the bodies of the five prospective corps members who died in an auto crash arrived in Akwa Ibom for interment in a C-130 Nigerian Air Force jet marked NAF917 and landed at the Victor Attah International Airport, Uyo, around 12:19pm.
In photos shared online, caskets containing the remains of the corps members were draped in the Nigerian and NYSC flags and lowered from the jet.
The deceased, who were on their way to the NYSC camp in Katsina State, were involved in an accident along Abaji-Kwali Expressway, Abuja.
The corps members had travelled by road in the dead of night to beat the camp registration deadline in faraway Katsina.
The deceased are; Innocent Upere and Victor Akpan, both graduates of Mass Communication, Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic; Miracle Asuquo, graduate of Psychology; Stella Ekikoh, graduate of Sociology and Anthropology and Coleman Ezuruike, graduate of History and International Studies; the three were graduates of the University of Uyo.
This has sparked a fresh discussion online regarding the scrapping of the scheme as many condemned the after-treatment given to the corps members whose transportation was never arranged by the scheme when they were alive.
Some of the reactions on social media are;
A Facebook user, Assumpta Nonye Williams wrote: “Why didn’t NYSC provide aircraft for all corps members travelling far? Medicine after death. Now they have been conveyed in an aircraft because they are dead... Rubbish! RIP to them. So painful."
Another user, Emmanuel Ukah said, “Why didn't the government provide air transportation when they were alive? That's why I don't support this NYSC thing.”
John Chilaka Maduabuchi stated, “Wait now, next batch of corpers will still enter motor to travel as far as Katsina. Nobody will plan to avoid the reoccurrence of what we are seeing today. I don't know when things will change for good in this country.”
Madubuike Chukwuebuka wrote, “Medicine after death, why must graduates be posted that far from home? Just abolish NYSC.”
Mabby Emmanuel said, “Isn't that stupidity, who is fooling who? You couldn't provide aircraft for them while alive, it is now you remember there is aircraft in Akwa Ibom state...”
Ogbonna Chinelo Precious wrote: ”So Sad. If I may say, I would suggest this programme (NYSC) be scrapped and the one-year payment calculated and paid to any graduate as part of empowerment.
”I know death is inevitable, but then on the cause of travelling on the road to be part of this programme, it has brought tears and loss of lives to many Nigerian families.
“Imagine someone travelling on the road from Akwa Ibom to Kastina ( a stressful journey) and ending up not getting to camp to join the programme. At the end of the day the excited fellow who bid the family a heart-warming goodbye was brought back as a corpse with a jet, isn't that an improper way of mocking the deceased?”
Mba Sally Oluchi said, “Why wouldn't govt provide that aircraft for their traveling, and for the ones that will still go to camp, not when they died in a road accident, they will use aircraft to carry their corpse back home.”
Kenneth Christopher stated, “They have aircraft to convey them back for burial but no aircraft to take them to camp, Nigeria sorry."
Ozioko Ambrose wrote, “They travel by road and died via accident probably cause of bad roads and their dead bodies travelled by air for safety. There was a country."