A MAN who went missing since New Years after attending the funeral of his father-in-law in Baegu Asifola is now confirmed dead.
His body was discovered along Sasafa River on Saturday approximately a week after he went missing from Uniai village.
The deceased, who hailed from Loina village in Tobaita, was attending the funeral of his father-in-law at Uniai Village in the Baegu Asifola when he went missing.
His lifeless body was discovered by four brothers who went on a fishing adventure along the Sasafa River on Saturday morning.
If it was not for the four brothers and their fishing adventure along Sasafa River, the search for the missing person will still continue because the location in which the body was found is not regularly visited.
According to the youngest of the four brothers, who first sighted the body, their plan that morning was to start their fishing adventure from the pool below Talifu Waterfall where Kwana’ai River meets Sasafa River and follow the river back to their village down-stream.
However, what supposed to be a fun fishing trip was quickly cut short when the youngest of the four brothers spotted the person wearing a red cloth laying on the Beagu side of the river bank.
He quickly alerted his three brothers who confirmed the lifeless body of a male person.
Communities in Baegu Asifola and neighbouring Lau Mbaelelea and Tobaita were already notified of the missing person as relatives searched for him so when the boys made the find, they quickly rushed back to their village to inform their father of the strange and unusual sighting of the lifeless body along the river bank.
News of the boys’ finding quickly spread to all communities along Sasafa River as the boys’ father left to inform the police and relatives of the deceased of his sons’ finding.
He then accompanied the police and the deceased relatives to the site where they met Reverend Silas Ramo and members of his community to assist the police and relatives to retrieve the body of the deceased.
According to those at the scene of the incident, retrieving the body was not easy because it was not until 10pm when police and relatives arrived at the scene due to the difficult terrain.
What surprised many people was how the deceased made it to Talifu Waterfalls as it is not a place that is regularly visited by people as there are no bush tracks.
Not only that but the location in which the body was found is 10 kilometers away from Uniai Village the place the man was last seen before he went missing.
That same night the body of the deceased was then carried from the mountain and by the time they arrived with the body at the main road it was already midnight – Sunday.
From the main road the body was then transported to his relatives at Gwaunasu in Lau Mbaelelea where post-mortem was conducted to determine the cause of death.
According to some witnesses, the deceased left Uniai Village at around 3am on New Year’s without informing his wife and in-laws.
However, the day before he left, he had informed his wife that he was afraid of one of his in-laws.
Police had since taken the deceased’s in-law in for questioning while investigation continues into the mysterious disappearance and death of the deceased.
Police suspected that the deceased must have died on Monday last week as the body had already started decomposing when it was discovered.
Police is yet to confirm the cause of death.
But MARODO Council in a media statement described the death as “the result of murder” and said the council “strongly condemned the gruesome act”.
News of the death has shocked people in Baegu Asifola and Tobaita forcing Malaita Province Premier Daniel Suidani to call for calm as police continue its investigation into the matter.
Member of Parliament (MP) for Baegu Asifola Makario Tagini and MP for Tobaita Senley Filualea have also taken steps to resolve the tense situation triggered by the strange disappearance and untimely death of Late Aba.
The leaders are calling for calm following reports that news of the death had resulted in roadblocks at Loina to prevent people from Baegu Asifola from travelling to North Road, causing fear to innocent road travellers.
Mr Suidani thanked the two MPs for taking steps to resolve the issue and called on relatives of the deceased to allow police to take control of the situation and do proper investigation into the matter. Premier Suidani also shared his heartfelt condolences to the immediate family of the deceased and his relatives.
By WILSON SAENI in Auki