14 April 2014

Nigeria: Abuja Explosion Update - Bomb Hidden Inside Volkswagen Golf Vehicle, Witness Says

Photo: Leadership
Burnt-out busses after an attack at a bus station packed with morning commuters in Abuja

The explosive device that went off at Nyanya motor park killing an estimated 200 people was hidden in a volkswagen golf vehicle that was driven into the park and detonated, a witness has said.

The witness, who is also the driver of one of the high-capacity buses caught in the blast, said this to PREMIUM TIMES at the park.

This is contrary to earlier reports that the bomb was placed in one of the high-capacity buses.

The witness, Dalhatu Garba, also said the bomb exploded when most of the buses in the front row where full and ready to convey passengers.

"We just heard a loud explosion and many people died instantly. In fact, many people were scattered into pieces," he said.

Mr. Garba explained the usual scenario at the park to shed light on the magnitude of the attack.

"Apart from our buses, many other smaller cars also come in to pick passengers especially those going on long journey," he said.

PREMIUM TIMES observed a large crater created by the blast right in front of the buses.

On casualty figure, Mr. Garba simply said "my brother many people died, I can't even give you figure".

He, however, said most of the people who died were inside smaller vehicles close to the golf car.

The Police spokesperson, Frank Mba, who accompanied the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar, on a visit to the scene, said emergency workers are still collating the casualty figure.

He urged journalists to be patient and wait for the official figures.

Apart from the police chief, the DIG in charge of operations of the Police; the Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, Sani Sidi; and the Interior Minister, Abba Moro, all visited the scene of the blast.

Sources at the scene said President Goodluck Jonathan might also visit the scene anytime from now.

PREMIUM TIMES has also learnt that injured victims have been taken to about seven hospitals for treatment, while corpses were deposited at General Hospitals in Nyanya and Asokoro, as well as the National Hospital.

Meanwhile, in a statement, NEMA said the explosion occurred at 6:30 a.m.

The agency's information officer, Sani Batti, also warned ordinary

citizens to keep off the explosion scene.

"The agency has found it necessary to also warn ordinary citizens to keep off the bomb explosion scene," Mr. Batti said.

He said the agency was yet to ascertain the casualty figure.

No group has claimed responsibility for the blast, although the Boko Haram terrorist group has carried out similar attacks in the past.

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