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American laboratory denies that a poison test was carried out on Mohbad

The management of the National Medical Services Laboratories in Pennsylvania, United States of America, has refuted the Lagos State government’s claim that a toxicology test was conducted at the factory to determine the cause of death of singer Ilerioluwa Aloba aka Mohbad set.

The NMS Labs claim was in response to questions from our correspondent, who embarked on a fact-finding mission to determine the musician’s cause of death.

Before embarking on the fact-finding mission, some concerned members of the public reportedly protested the claim of a pathologist, who appeared before the coroner’s court on Wednesday, May 15, saying that an autopsy could not determine Mohbad’s cause of death because his cause of death could not be determined. body had decomposed.

PUNCH Metro had reported that the counsel to the state government, O. Akinde, sometime in November 2023, told the Coroner in Ikorodu area of ​​the state that a toxicology test, an aspect of an autopsy to determine the cause of Mohbad’s death, , was performed in the United States.

Substantiating this claim, the state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Gbenga Omotoso, while responding to queries through a live telephone conversation with Ahmad Isah, the presenter of an Abuja-based online programme, Brekete Family, said sometime in February 2024 that the toxicology test was conducted at the NMS Labs in Pennsylvania, USA.

“The case is being handled by the state DNA and Forensic Center but they provide skeletal services and they have three affiliated centers.

“So when an emergency like this happens, they won’t say they can’t handle it. So there are three in the US and the one that manages this particular task is the NMS in Pennsylvania, US,” Omotoso said during the live programme.

The test result reportedly arrived in Nigeria sometime in April 2024 and was passed to a pathologist for interpretation.

The pathologist appeared before the coroner’s court and revealed that the autopsy could not determine Mohbad’s cause of death because the corpse had decomposed.

However, during the fact-finding mission, our correspondent independently verified the location of the NMS Labs at 3701 Welsh Road Willow Grove, Pennsylvania, and that of two NMS crime labs on Stratford Avenue, Willow Grove, Pennsylvania, and another in Grand Prairie, Texas.

The single email address these labs had used for correspondence was also discovered on the NMS Labs website and our correspondent sent a request to confirm whether a toxicology test had been conducted at their facility to determine Mohbad’s death.

The investigation read in part: “I am a journalist with Punch Newspaper in Nigeria and am currently working on a story on the death of Nigerian hip-hop artist Ilerioluwa Aloba, also known as Mohbad.

“After the Lagos State Government took active interest in the case, the State Commissioner for Information has revealed that the government conducted a toxicology test on the late artiste at your facility. Here is the link where he said that at 32:21 (https://youtu.be/SW59DTJZV3I?si=ty0OaXJSTvfuC4Oz).

“However, conflicting reports have emerged, casting doubt on whether the toxicology test actually took place at your facility. As a journalist dedicated to factual reporting, I am independently contacting your institution to verify the authenticity of this claim. Clarification of this will contribute significantly to resolving the discrepancies surrounding the artist’s demise.”

Respond PUNCH Metro on May 17, Esther Dede, Client Services Associate, Forensics Division, NMS Labs, refuted the state government’s claim that Mohbad’s toxicology test was conducted in one of their laboratories.

“Unfortunately, we do not have a case for this patient,” Dede said.

However, Dede noted, “To maintain our compliance with the HIPAA privacy rules, we require consent from the submitting agency.”

When contacted on Wednesday, the Commissioner for Information, Omotoso, said this was the name of the laboratory given to him by the state DNA and Forensic Center.

“This is what I was told by the officials of Lagos State DNA and Forensic Center who collected the sample there. We are dealing with the officials of the center, they have three other laboratories that they have ties with. If they have an emergency, they can go to one of three laboratories. I asked what specific place they were going to and they said it was that one. That means I have to look again, because that’s what I was told.”

Mohbad died at the age of 27, on September 12, 2023, with the circumstances surrounding his death sparking controversy on social media.

A former record label signee of Naira Marley-owned Marlian Music, Mohbad left the label in February 2022. The Lagos State Police Command had on September 18, 2023, inaugurated a 13-man Special Investigation Team to probe the singer’s death.

His death also led to the arrest of Naira Marley and controversial Lagos socialite, Balogun Eletu, also known as Sam Larry, among others.

The singer’s body was exhumed for an autopsy on September 21, 2023 to unravel the cause of his death.

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