Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
Residents of Ado Ekiti were yesterday thrown into confusion as reactive substances suspected to be bomb exploded at the old secretariat of the Ekiti State Government.
The explosion, which occurred at about 7:05 a.m. unsettled the state capital, causing unprecedented ground shaking in the metropolitan area of the ancient rock-strewn city.
The explosion, according to THISDAY findings, quivered and vibrated with great effect in such areas as Okesa, Okeyinmi, Irona, Adebayo road, Ilawe road and the entire secretariat area
Confirming the incident on its twitter handle, @ekitistategov yesterday, the state government said the Explosives Ordnance Disposal office, also known as the Anti-Bomb Squad, in Ado Ekiti exploded.
The Ekiti EOD, a unit under the State Police Command, was situated within the premises of old governor’s office and few metres away from Fajuyi Memorial Park.
THISDAY findings revealed that the explosion brought the office of Ekiti EOD down, reducing the bungalow to wreckages and affecting other buildings around in varying degree.
THISDAY also observed that the office of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Correspondents Chapel, Ekiti Chapter, adjoining the Ekiti EOD, was badly affected.
The explosion equally affected all the offices around the Ekiti EOD, devastating louvre blades, window glasses, chloride (PVC) ceilings, doors and windscreen of vehicles.
However, the state government confirmed that there were no casualties but the impact caused some damage to some government offices in the vicinity of the explosion.
In a statement just after the incident, the Commissioner for Information, Mr. Muyiwa Olumilua said an explosion was reported at the Explosives Ordnance Disposal (EOD) office in Ado Ekiti.
He said an initial on -the- spot assessment “confirms that there are no casualties and the area is secured with no further threats. Members of the public are advised to go about their normal duties.”
At about 10:00 a.m., the Commissioner of Police, Mr Asuquo Amba and officers of the anti bomb squad cordoned the scene, working to evacuate some of the explosive materials from the area.
Shortly after the explosion, the state governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi visited the scene alongside Chief Bisi Egbeyemi, protesting the location of the EOD office within the old secretariat.
Discussing with the police commission, the governor observed that the Ekiti Police EoD office should not have been located in the area, noting that it should be at a distant location.
At a session with journalists yesterday, the police commissioner observed that he suspected that the explosion was caused by counter terrorism accessories kept in the office.
He said: “Let my men from anti bomb department check around. Officers of the anti bomb are combing the place as you can see. This is the office where they keep detonation accessories.
“The explosion must have been caused by equipment kept in their stock house. The area has been cordoned off. We are going to devise means of ensuring Improvement in the stocking of the equipment next time.
“We are happy that there is no loss of life, no casualty. Some of these devises are used to detect bomb and to detonate it . Some of them used to detonate on their own and that must have caused the explosion,” the police chief explained.