By Chidi Nkwopara
NINETEEN persons died instantly when a bullion van of a yet to be identified commercial bank had a head-on collision with a commuter bus, Friday, at Atta, Ikeduru Local Council Area of Imo State.
Sunday Vanguard learntÂ that the fully loaded white Hyundai bus in the fleet of Abia City Transport Company with registration number XA 769 RRT was heading to Okigwe, while the racing bullion van with registration number CH 84 DGB was going to Owerri.
A villager, who identified himself simply as Sunny, said â€œthe bullion van driver, who was driving recklessly, was overtaking a long row of vehicles before he rammed into the commercial bus.â€ Our correspondent, who tried to get close to the scene of the accident, was barred by the large presence of security personnel guarding the bullion van.
â€œWe reliably gathered that the villagers were planning to vandalize and loot the bullion van in the guise of protesting against the carnageâ€, a police man that spoke on the conditionÂ of anonymity said.
Confirming theÂ incident in a telephone interview, the sector commander of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Imo State Command, Mr. Angus Ibezim, said that the accident occurred at about 3.15p.m.
He saidÂ that no fewer than 22 people were involved in the road traffic crash, adding that over 17 people died on the spot, while three suffered varying degrees of injuries.