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Nigerian Twittersphere Expresses Displeasure as Lagos State Coroner Allegedly Refuses to Release Peter Bello’s Body



Peter Lives On

The past couple of days have been emotionally challenging for the family, friends, and loved ones of the late Peter Bello, who passed away as a result of the unfortunate Bristow Helicopter crash.

A memorial service was held for him on Monday, August 17. The funeral was scheduled to take place today, August 20th.

However, reports circulating online state that the Lagos State coroner has refused to release Bello’s body, as well as the body of his co-pilot, Joseph Wyatt. A source close to the deceased, also reached out to BN confirming the news.

Nigerians on Twitter, including celebrity, Uti Nwachukwu, have expressed their displeasure about the development.

Uti Tweets (1) Uti Tweets (2) Uti Tweets (3) Uti Tweets (4) Uti Tweets (5) Uti Tweets (10) Uti Tweets (11) Uti Tweets (12) Uti Tweets (13) Uti Tweets (14) Jay Wyatt Peter Bello 3 Peter Bello 4 Peter Bello 5 Peter Bello 6 Peter Bello2

A source close to Bello sent BN this message:

“All we have heard is that the Coroner who is the VP of LASU. pROF JOHN OBAFUNWA . has refused to sign the release documents cos he claims that he must talk to the governor first!! They knew the funeral dates and still he has decided to use this to get attention for his own issues??? I heard so many big personalities have called to BEG this man and he has refused. The family is so devastated. They keep hurting the open wounds more.

For them to be begging the man it means he has something on the government and cos he has national attention now he wants to use this medium to blackmail them into attending to his issues I suppose. Smh smh smh.”


Upon investigation, it was discovered that the body is yet to be released due to standard procedure that the coroner’s office must adhere to.

All relevant parties are well briefed and respect the coroner’s timeline and procedure.


  1. H.A.W

    August 20, 2015 at 12:38 pm

    Sigh!! I am tired of this country.
    I hope that as at now now that the body of Peter is in Calabar to be laid to final rest please. What kind of nonsense is this? Is this Change? Come on!!

    • Angryafrican

      August 20, 2015 at 2:30 pm

      Please hush!!! Wat does Buhari have to do with this now??? Why did the family set a date without getting clearance first??

      For those asking why there is need for an autopsy, pls think about insurance, lawsuit claims, etc…..soo many stakeholders are involved in tragic occurencies such and plane & helicopter crashes.

      The late Peter Bello and Jay Wyatt were the pilots so there is alot at stake if proper investigation is not done. Leave ur emotions and hype at door pls, families of the helicopter passengers need to know if foulplay, negligence, etc was involved.

      Ladies & Gents, please relax. Busy body celebs like Uti gbafuor dia. U are forming activist but when Peter was alive u didnt hype him like dis. Swaaaaaaa, everybody just using Peter’s death to be seen

    • honey

      August 20, 2015 at 3:21 pm

      So are you telling me that for ONE week, the authorities haven’t managed to take all the samples they might need for an autopsy??? #Gerraraherrrr!!!!

    • honey

      August 20, 2015 at 3:23 pm

      And oh, you don’t need the bodies to determine negligence, they should go and decode the black box…

    • BlueEyed

      August 21, 2015 at 3:29 am

      Same thing I said why is Uti championing what not?? Standard procedure must be adhered to, y’al should relax and allow a man do his job.

  2. LuvMiJeje

    August 20, 2015 at 12:47 pm

    I’m sure he has a valid reason for not releasing the body yet and there’s due process to be followed in such a situation. I understand there’s a lot of emotion attached to this but ‘celebs’ like Uti Nwachukwu need to chill, there’s no need to go on public rants without investigating the reason for such delay.

    • Angryafrican

      August 20, 2015 at 2:31 pm

      As in, can nigerians just chillax. Peter was the pilot and not just a passenger so all i’s and t’s need to be checked biko.

    • slice

      August 20, 2015 at 6:47 pm

      He may ve a valid reason but he`s apparently too big to explain it to them unless forced by this public outcry. Useless coroner

  3. Laura

    August 20, 2015 at 12:47 pm

    Crazy, if true! Only in Nigeria

  4. H.A.W

    August 20, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    Ok THIS SUCKS!! Just confirmed. Peter isnt with the family yet in Calabar to be buried. They are just postponing pain and closure. This is not fair…. #WhatWouldPeterDo We would just continue to pray 🙁 … Gosh

  5. Buchi Obichie

    August 20, 2015 at 12:53 pm

    So a dead body is now being used as a bargaining chip??? The coroner should be ashamed of himself!!!

  6. chukwukadibia

    August 20, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    Sorry to ask oh,so the family of Peter havnt gotten the body of thier son and they set a date for the burial?? Is there something I am not understanding here?? I need proper explanations

    • pinkie

      August 20, 2015 at 1:04 pm

      is that a bad thing? they didn’t see this coming. in less than an hour, the body can be flown to place of funeral. why is this such a big deal

  7. Andrew

    August 20, 2015 at 12:58 pm

    Haba Bella! There are instances where autopsies are mandated by law. This may be one. The coroner is likely going through due process. Just because this crash made the news doesn’t mean due process should not be followed. Are there no educated people in the family? Nigerians just go to school without truly getting education.

    • mi

      August 20, 2015 at 1:18 pm

      Pls wat autopsy do dey wanna carry out on a body dat was involved in an accident & y avnt it been done asap….dis guy is 2 young if u care 2 no…d authorities ought 2 be investigating on y & how d plan exploded not detaining der bodies

    • Jaygirl

      August 20, 2015 at 1:18 pm

      Autopsy for what please?????? Do u even know when one is required?

    • Kadara

      August 20, 2015 at 1:35 pm

      Too many illiterates in Nigeria, of course autopsies must be carried out, the blood alcohol levels of the pilots must be checked , they must check if either of them had any medical condition that may have affected them because they need to discover if the crash was due to human error or mechanical faults. People should be patient, the families will get the bodies of their loved ones after due process has been followed

    • Busarni

      August 20, 2015 at 1:36 pm

      Learned Andrew; I hear you ooh; autopsy to find out if, perhaps they were drunk abi? What has autopsy got to do with a chopper that burst into flames minutes before hitting the water. They should be conducting the autopsy on the black box; learned Andrew. I will just ignore you, because that is what my Petbelly will do to your type….

    • onetallgirl

      August 20, 2015 at 4:48 pm

      Ok so the coroner says that they need to follow “standard procedures” oh please what standard procedures are they talking about. Because Peter Bello they want to follow “standard procedures’. Since when did these “standard procedures” start being followed in this Nigeria?

    • Lezxy

      August 20, 2015 at 10:40 pm

      Who are the fools ‘liking’ this idiotic comment 61 times? Do you know that the parents of this young man need closure?

    • Reply

      August 22, 2015 at 2:00 am

      When such arise it should be carried out urgently, his body does not belong to the state even though he passed on working for the state it belongs to his family.

  8. calabargirl

    August 20, 2015 at 1:21 pm

    Common Nigerians, must we use every incident to make our voices heard? Uti et al there’s no need to go on a random rant just to get attention to yourself. there must be due process as others have said for the body to be released. I know emotions are raging and all but lets not be shallow. Not to sound harsh but i second the comment that all things were not cleared prior to fixing the date of the funeral. It doesn’t really add up and I won’t be surprised if this information isn’t completely correct. Heartbreaking needless to say.

  9. Miss No-name

    August 20, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    Dear Andrew, You made a valid point when you said autopsies maybe mandated by law which I think may be the case here. However, your comment about there being no educated people in his family is rather insensitive. You should understand that the family is in a very emotional and broken state and at times like this such emotions may trump your ability to reason rationally no matter how highly educated one is. They just want to bury their son and get over it.

    Please let us be careful how we speak to others especially when they are hurting, more so that there is even no official statement from Peter’s family concerning this issue. Thanks.

    Rest in peace Peter, you surely fulfilled purpose, you didn’t die empty. Your death has made me re-evaluate my life and live enjoying what I truly love.

    • feelitx

      August 20, 2015 at 4:51 pm

      Well said. Needless to say more.

  10. Celeste

    August 20, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    Just keep quiet! What valid reasons to explain that a body slated to be buried today is yet to be released to his family, and with that adding more pain to his family and friends? Our Nigerian system is damn stupid, slow and abusive. And people like you encourage our deteriorating system to decay more with your nonsense excuses. Right is right and wrong is wrong, don’t excuse it! If there was any investigations that needed to be done, shouldn’t the coroner get it done before the burial date? That was how the families of the victims of TB Joshua church building collapse were so stressed before they received the corpse of the dead whose bodies were already in bad condition decaying.

  11. Ibinabo

    August 20, 2015 at 2:13 pm

    This story just taya person.

  12. Advisory committee

    August 20, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    Nigerians, I dont Know the details of this Case. In fact I am thousands of miles away from Lagos. Here is what I think. The helicopter was insured. The insurance, as small as it is relative to the lives lost is necessary to offer compensation to survivors and families of the dead. One requirement is to eliminate pilot error, foul play, etc. Part of the process is to enSure Sobriety at time of crash. Does not mean the chopper did not explode. its just part 0f the process of piecing a puzzle that meets coverage criteria. for example, if a pilot or driver has high alcohol levels, survivors can also see the company for liability because they can argue that impaired pilots would not have been able to take the recommended actions in an emergency to maximize survival rates.. what if both pilots were poisoned before flight or Knocked out in flight by a terrorist, would you not want Bristow to Know so they can save more li ves by beefing up security’? I Know you all love Peter and he Sounded like a great young man with so much promise cut short. but calm down and let due process take place so That his corpse is not dug up at a later date and he Can finally rest in peace without questions hanging over his head. what you need to advocate for is why it is taking all this time to do an autopsy , and better Communication from the coroner. Not completing an autopsy in 1 week is insane unless because of our continuing gross incompetence, we have to send samples abroad for forensic testing.

  13. Anonymous

    August 20, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    Hmm Nigerians I don’t know why we always make things difficult for ourselves. Why will they fix a funeral date without getting clearance about the body? Let the authorities do their job, complete the investigations. We acknowledge the family’s pain but what must be done must be done. If they don’t investigate now people will complain, now that they are investigating people are complaining. Na wa o, there is no winning with Nigerians. They are not keeping the body indefinitely, let us be open minded about this.

  14. Tunmi

    August 20, 2015 at 2:18 pm

    Well then wait.

  15. Zoey

    August 20, 2015 at 2:25 pm

    Kadara , are you a pilot ? Thank you !! You know !! There are different contributing factors to an accident. The alcohol level of the pilots could also be a factor which is being checked by the mandated aviation coroner or medical examiner. X

  16. xb

    August 20, 2015 at 2:26 pm

    hmmmmm…. this chopper crashed last week. The bodies have been with the goverment.. The know families are in soo much pain … The must have been informed that the burial date has been fixed right?? why on earth do people just like to be so insensitive towards people who are already in pain?? haba Mr coroner !! You must have been duly informed by peter’s famliy about the burial, they dont look like they dont know theres due process ,i strongly belive the family will not just fix a date without getting a go ahead from You and the government Sir Coroner. Give them the corpse,PKB was not a drama person so let his family bury him and stop making drama with his corpse… Haba everybody wants small recognition even with corpses..

    • feelitx

      August 20, 2015 at 4:58 pm

      This is standard practise in Lagos for people who die in Lagos state. This happened in 2009 when a friend’s sister passed and we grappled with the same issues. I am of the opinion that Peter’s family might have set the date considering that the family lives in calabar without being aware that this law applies in Lagos state. Having said that, I strongly feel that the process can be faster and can be better managed.

  17. mee

    August 20, 2015 at 2:27 pm

    i’m sorry UTI u stay doing the most!!! i understand the need to rant about this but what is with all the plenty talk about his organs?? arent you causing more pain for the friends and family by making this a possibility? don’t they have enough to worry about?? pls learn to chill sometimes or apply caution if u must talk!! wth

  18. ranter

    August 20, 2015 at 3:05 pm

    Uti likes to over do sometimes and i find it rather abhor coming from a man. TEKE IDEM AMEKOP?( calm down you hear?)

  19. Anonymous

    August 20, 2015 at 3:22 pm

    Kadara or wotsoever your name is just shut up.must you talk ? Mr learned. I don’t blame you. It’s not ur broda dat is lying cold. I’m sure ure an alcoholic dats y alcohol is de first thing dat came to ur head

  20. Hmmm

    August 20, 2015 at 4:22 pm

    Uti should stop making noise.
    An autopsy on bodies that had been in the water for greater than 24 he’s might not give you much tho, just saying..

    We keep saying we want change but we won’t let due process be followed. Ido not know the whole story but they should have checked with authorities before fixing a date.
    I highly doubt the fact that the coroner would have withheld the body of a company bus driver who caused a fatal road traffic accident, when big names like “Bristow” are mentioned then ‘due process’ must be followed. Sigh!

    I seriously hope they don’t try to pin this on Peter or the pilot. And my heart is with the Bello’s , today should have been a huge step to them getting closure on Peter’s death…

    Rest well Peter, all this one na jara, your soul left a long time ago

  21. Hmmm

    August 20, 2015 at 4:23 pm

    24 hours

  22. feelitx

    August 20, 2015 at 5:01 pm

    Hahahahahahahaha. Anye.

  23. Angela

    August 20, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    Thank you all very much for your prayers and concerns.
    Long story short, the voices of people who cried out have been heard, Peter will be coming home to Calabar tomorrow.

    Venue: St. Patrick’s parish, Ikot Ansa, Calabar.
    Date: Friday 21st August, 2015.
    Time: 12 noon.
    Interment follows immediately after @ Hawkins Road Cemetery Calabar.

    Thank you.

  24. ME

    August 20, 2015 at 6:23 pm


  25. Bennie

    August 21, 2015 at 8:58 am

    Hmmmmm!whatever it is I pray it is resolved very very soon so he can be buried in peace

  26. Olu

    August 21, 2015 at 10:44 am

    you cldn’t hv said xplained it any beta….SHARRAP UTI…RIP to d dead

  27. Frank talk

    August 21, 2015 at 11:57 pm

    Whether you agree or not, the so called “ranting” of Uti has done the magic and made them release Peter’s body. Nobody else was ready to bell the cat but he did. Very selfless of him. As for all those passing in complementary remarks about him, it’s obvious that you are either ignorant about the usual delay tactics Nigerians in certain places of authority play just to frustrate people and feel relevant. Or you are simply envious of a young man who is playing his part as a brother and concerned person. It’s obvious Peter was his friend. Insinuating that he is famzing or trying to feel relevant is a wicked statement. Rest in Peace dear Peter. I hope & pray that indeed you are at God’s right hand. Beautiful tributes given of you. A lesson for everyone. How would you want people to remember you when you are gone?

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