The aftermath of Tuesday’s tragic explosion in the Adeyi area of Old Bodija, Ibadan, has taken a more somber turn as the Oyo State government announced on Thursday that the death toll has risen to five. The announcement was made during a press briefing by Fatai Owoseni, the Special Adviser on Security Matters to Governor Seyi Makinde.
Owoseni disclosed that two additional bodies were recovered, bringing the total number of casualties to five. He emphasized that the rescue operation is still ongoing, with security agencies collaborating to piece together information for a thorough investigation.
“Rescue operation is still ongoing. As of yesterday (Wednesday), we had three casualties, but this morning (Thursday), I got information from the security operatives supporting the medical team that two more dead bodies were recovered,” Owoseni stated.
The explosion, which rocked the Adeyi area, damaged approximately 58 houses and left 77 residents with serious injuries, as previously reported by The PUNCH.
To secure the scene, a group of stern-looking soldiers took control of the area, restricting both human and vehicular movements. The heavy military presence aimed to prevent potential looting and maintain order around the disaster site.
Residents in the affected area have either evacuated or sought refuge at Emergency Operation Centres set up by the State Government for structural integrity tests on their buildings. Soldiers stationed at the scene ensured that no unauthorized individuals gained access.
A resident, Adekunle Ajadi, raised concerns about the indiscriminate sale of property to foreigners within the estate, emphasizing the need for a review of property acquisition and transfer laws.
Meanwhile, the Head of the Emergency Operation Centre, Temitope Alonge, expressed determination to continue the search for survivors until all victims are accounted for. Earth-moving equipment has been deployed to clear debris, and the Operations Emergency team is actively involved in the evacuation process.
Governor Seyi Makinde, who has been visiting victims to offer support, assured the public that the perpetrators of the incident would face justice.
In response to speculations, the Nigerian Army, through Maj. Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, Director of Army Public Relations, clarified that the explosion was not a terrorist attack. Maj. Gen. Nwachukwu highlighted the army’s involvement in rescue missions from the night of the incident and emphasized that the situation was not an act of terrorism.