A 40-year-old Tanna driver was found dead some metres away from Whitegrass Airport terminal early Saturday, and foul play is suspected in his death, sources said.

The death was confirmed by sources within Tafea Police Patrol who would not comment further on the matter claiming it was still under police investigation.

They admitted that two women have been arrested in relation to the death and were being held by the authorities in Isangel to complete the investigation.

But sources said that the deceased, known as Dan Jimmy Iapiap, was found dead near a swamp few meters away from the main road from Whitegrass Airport to Lenakel.

It is claimed that there were some scratches all over his body.

Other marks were found on other parts of his body.

The two women currently in custody were last seen with the deceased on December 7, 2018 (Friday) before he was allegedly killed.

It is alleged that on that date, late Iapiap dropped off some customers at Lenakel with his wife who got off the bus and said she will go shopping before they go home.

Sources said that Iapiap seemed fit and relaxed at the time and told his wife that he will go to the bread shop nearby to get some bread.

They said that after reaching the shop, Iapiap swung the bus there and took the other road that passed by the market with the two women onboard the bus.

It was around 3 to 4pm and Iapiap hit the double signal while heading down to Whitegrass Airport at high speed. The bus was reportedly seen at Loukatai and later at Lamkail then Imayelone on its way to Whitegrass.

A source who only wished to be named Numake said that on Friday afternoon, the airport staff after exiting their workplaces and saw the two women walking towards the entrance of the airport in which they described their appearances as ‘not normal’.

The duo attempted to stop the staff but the truck didn’t stop.

The wife was waiting at Lenakel for the deceased thinking that he went to buy the bread instead he was already dead just half an hour after she was dropped off.

The search for the man went all night on Friday until dawn on Saturday until his body was discovered some metres away from his bus in a secluded area beside the tarmac.

Iapiap’s body was buried on Saturday at his home at Whitegrass.

Numake said that no autopsy was performed on the body to find the cause of the death but the entire family is praying and asking for information in relation to the incident to step forward and talk to the police.

Iapiap was a former security officer at Whitegrass Airport from September 1998 until 2012 when he decided to purchase a service bus and join the tourism industry.

He left behind his wife and six children.

Daily Post will be following this case should there be any remand order issued for court proceedings.


SOURCE: VANUATU DAILY POST