Yesterday’s attack, which occurred around 8:30 p.m was targeted at a new temporary bus station. Since the previous attack, many taxi drivers had resorted to picking passengers by the road side.
“I was on my way to buying some stuff in the area when suddenly we had a deafening explosion. I had to immediately run home for safety,” said Aliyu Musa, a teacher who also narrowly escaped the April 14 blast.
He said with the way the area was crowded, there was no way many would not be affected.
Musa added that from the shop where he stood, he saw at least 10 bodies across the road lying on the ground but could not confirm whether they were dead or alive. Another eyewitness said he counted 20 bodies.
Sources at the scene said it appeared to be a car bomb. At the Emergency Ward of the Asokoro Hospital, 16 bodies had already been deposited by 9.30p.m with ambulances and emergency workers still making frantic efforts to retrieve the dead and rescue the injured.
The gridlock caused by security men who mobilised to the scene and cordoned off the area hampered rescue operations, according to our correspondent.
The National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, and the National Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, last night confirmed that nine people died in the blast.
“While security agencies have condoned the area of an explosion this evening in Zuba Abuja, response agencies have moved injured victims to hospitals and at least nine lifeless bodies have been deposited in the mortuary, while 11 unconscious victims are receiving medical attention in different hospitals in Abuja. Other injured victims too are being attended to.
“The public are urged to cooperate with security agencies and avoid rushing to the scene to guard against hampering the efforts of the various agencies working together to ensure public safety,” a statement signed by Emmanuel Okeh, Head, Public Relations, NSCDC and Manzo Ezekiel, Press Officer NEMA, said.
When contacted, spokeswoman of the Federal Capital Territory FCT Command of the Nigeria Police Force, Altine Daniel said the force was still trying to ascertain how it happened.