Paul Obi in Abuja
There was panic in Abuja Tuesday following an explosion, suspected to have occured from a bomb blast at the popular Banex Plaza shopping mall on Aminu Kano Crescent at Wuse II, injuring one person.
Although the explosion occurred at about 9.30pm from a parked car, it was not clear if the bomb was planted in the car or was thrown at it.
The only injured victim was rushed to an undisclosed hospital for treatment. However, the identity of the injured person was not known at press time to ascertain whether he was the carrier of the explosive or a passerby.
The explosion caused panic as people scampered to safety.
An eyewitness told THISDAY that they just heard a bang inside a parked car and the people started running without knowing what caused the blast.
A team of policemen from the Federal Capital Territory Police Command, which visited the scene of the incident shortly after the blast and cordoned off the place, said they could not ascertain the immediate cause of the blast.
A similar explosion on June 22 had cut short the fun of night revellers at Krystal Lounge, Abuja, as they fled to safety. Although nobody died in the incident, many were injured and some luxury cars damaged.
The National Emergency Management Agency's (NEMA) Head of Operations, Ishaya Chinoko, told THISDAY that the building was deserted when NEMA officials were trying to gain access to it.
According to a preliminary report released by NEMA, "About 30 minutes ago (around 9.50 pm Nigerian time) officers of the National Emergency Management Agency received an alert over a suspected explosion at a shopping mall in Wuse II, Abuja.
"The officers of the search and rescue and other response agencies are now at the scene and have cordoned the area around Park & Shop and Banex Plaza."
NEMA Director-General, Muhammed Sani-Sidi, warned people to be wary of going to the scene of bomb explosion for fear of a secondary explosion that could come later, adding that not doing so would allow emergency