Note: Story contains an image some may find disturbing.
By Tony Edike & OLA AJAYI
ENUGU— TRAGEDY struck in Enugu and Oyo states yesterday as 46 persons died in separate auto accidents. The accident in Enugu which occurred at Egede village on Ninth Mile-Nsukka Highway were a commuter bus belonging to Peace Mass Transit with number plate BENUE – XB 504 TKP and another bus owned by Enugu State Transport Company, ENTRACO, with number plate ENUGU – XL 812 UWN each conveying 15 passengers.
The accident claimed 28 passengers and the drivers. Among the deceased were four discharged members of the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, who were returning to their homes after the national service.
Two persons who were seriously injured and went into coma were rescued by officials of the Federal Road Safety Commission, FRSC, who rushed them to a hospital at Ninth Mile.
The Peace Mass Transit bus marked 2258 was conveying passengers from Enugu to Nsukka and was said to be overtaking another vehicle when he collided with oncoming ENTRACO bus.
Several travelling bags belonging to the passengers littered the road as the FRSC rescue team and sympathizers discovered four NYSC discharge certificates in the luggage.
The FRSC Sector Commander in Delta State, Commander Lukas Ikpi who got to the scene of the accident while travelling on the road said he immediately alerted his men at the Enugu Sector Command who rushed to the scene for rescue operation.
Senator Ayogu Eze, representing Enugu North Senatorial District, who was returning to Enugu with some journalists after a function at Igboetiti local government area met the FRSC officials removing the mangled corpses trapped in the smashed vehicles.
Deputy Governor of Enugu State, Mr Sunday Onyebuchi and Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Water Resources, Dr Godknows Igali, the State Chairman of PDP, Engr. Vita Abba, who also attended the flag off of the N2.57 billion Adada River Dam at Igboetiti council also witnessed the accident and expressed shock at the number of casualties.
18 die in Ibadan auto crash
At the Ibadan accident, 18 people were said to have died after a commercial bus fell off a bridge at Soka Bus Stop, Oluyole Local Government area of the city.
Among those who lost their lives in the unfortunate accident were two children whose ages ranged between three and five. There were only three survivors.
The commercial bus with number plate JIGAWA XB 633 DUT which was Lagos bound took off from Kano State and on getting to Ibadan, involved in an accident.
According to an eye witness, the accident happened around 7.00 am along Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
A survivor who identified himself as Ahmadu, said since they left Kano, the trip was hitch-free until they got to Ibadan.
Since they all came from different places, he could not identify any of the deceased whose corpses have been deposited at the mortuaries of the Adeoyo General Hospital, University College Hospital while others are receiving treatment in another hospital.
Men of the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, and Oyo State Police Command were busy rescuing some of the survivors and taking them to the hospital.
The state FRSC Sector Commander, Mr. Godwin Ogagaoghene confirmed the accident saying reckless driving must have been responsible for the accident.