Police rule out foul play

A MAN whose body was found in a drain in Labasa on Sunday died a natural death, police say.

Police spokesperson Ana Naisoro confirmed that post-mortem examination results cleared murder or assault as the cause of death.

However, police also confirmed that the phone of the deceased was found with a person who had been questioned earlier and this matter would be further investigated.

The body of Meli Sakia, 39, was found in a drain at Vunivau in Labasa. He was last seen alive at a club in town on Saturday night.

His family, however, remain shocked that their eldest brother would no longer be around.

Mr Sakia’s sister, Vika Vounavere, said the last time she spoke to her brother was in the early hours of Friday morning.

“Sakia was a very humble and kind man who would never hurt anyone.

“He would only speak when spoken to. Until now, I still can’t believe that he’s gone,” she said.

She said she had made plans to look after Mr Sakia’s table at the Labasa market on Monday while he travelled to Savusavu to sell mangoes.

“We didn’t know that was the last conversation we would ever have,” she said.

“We only knew about his death from one of our uncles and that was after 11pm on Sunday.”

Mr Sakia was the eldest of four siblings in his family.

Labasa market vendor Seci Kaimuagone said Mr Sakia was a very humble man and he would always crack jokes at the market.

Mr Sakia was living with a relative at Vunivau.

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