Tanker Explosion, Osinbajo Visits Lagos, Says FG Saddened by Incident

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• Another 10 Injured in Lagos, 5 in Abuja

By Chiemelie  Ezeobi

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo yesterday visited the Lagos House in Alausa Ikeja to convey the federal government’s condolences to the state government on the tragic tanker explosion on Thursday at the Otedola Bridge where nine people died and over 50 vehicles were burnt. Another accident yesterday on the same bridge injured  10 people.

This is as another tanker inferno on Suleija-Minna Road, has left at least five persons with injuries.

Osinbajo, who spoke shortly after a closed door meeting with the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, said the federal government was deeply saddened by the incident, adding that President Muhammadu Buhari had delegated him to visit the State to commiserate with the people of Lagos on the unfortunate incident.

“I am here to commiserate with the government and people of Lagos State on the tragedy that occurred just yesterday. It’s a very terrible thing and all of us were deeply saddened by it. Before Mr. President left this morning, he asked me to express his sincere condolences to his Excellency and also to the people of the State. It’s a very deeply saddening event and we pray this sort of thing will never repeat itself.

“We also hope that all of those who have suffered injury will recover soon and we pray for comfort for those who lost their loved ones and properties in this very tragic event. That’s why I’m here.

Responding, Ambode thanked the Vice President for finding time to visit to condole with the people of the State in this moment of grief, saying that it was a testament to the fact that the federal government was deeply concerned about the safety of lives and property of residents in the State. 

“We just want to say a big thank you to President Muhammadu Buhari and also a big thank you to Mr. Vice President for finding out time to quickly commiserate with us in Lagos. Mr. President who is not able to be here personally has sent the Vice President, because they feel so strongly that this kind of incident is not what should be occurring at this time in Lagos and they feel so concerned that beyond the incident, if there are other remedies that we need to do, we have already discussed on those issues that we need to quickly put in place to avoid a recurrence,” he said. 

Ambode also assured Osinbajo that the situation had been brought under control and normalcy had been restored within the axis where the incident occurred, saying that all hands are on deck to prevent such incidents in future.

The Friday accident which injured 10 people occurred when commercial bus drivers, a yellow bus and a white Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) assisted mass transit bus, were said to be driving in opposite directions when the accident occurred.

According to eyewitness account, the two drivers were impatient and attempted to have right of way at the same time and it resulted in a head-on collision.

However, the accident affected the yellow commercial bus more than that FGN transit bus as it recorded more injured passengers.

Although details of the Abuja inferno were still sketchy at press time, eyewitnesses said the tanker belonging to Conoil was laden with kerosene collided with a trailer with no visible identification marks leading to loss of control and eventual crash of both vehicles before the tanker carrying kerosene burst into flames.

The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) confirmed that some people were injured but no life was lost. The FRSC also said the injured people were rushed to different health institutions in Abuja for treatment.

The Public Relations Officer of the Corps, Mr. Bisi Kazeem, confirmed the accident which he explained was caused by speed violation.