President Muhammadu Buhari, former Governor of Abia state and Senate’s Chief whip, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu and Governor Samuel Otorm of Benue state, yesterday sympathised with the government of Anambra state and its people on the death of a mother and her child as a result of an oil tanker accident which occurred in Onitsha. The trio in separate statements expressed sadness over the tragedy befalling the woman and her child during the explosion. President Buhari in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu said he was touched by the incident.
He said: “I am profoundly touched by the sight of the charred remains of an innocent mother and her child who are victims of this tragedy. “I also extend my sympathies to other victims of the explosion whose houses, shops and other property were destroyed in the mishap. “While I express sadness over this tragedy, I must at the same time call for urgent action on the part of those concerned to stem these frequent fatal disasters on public roads. “Safety precautions and routine maintenance are taken for granted by vehicle owners.” “I call on the Ministry of Transport, the Federal Road Safety Commission and other stakeholders to urgently address the issue of safety standards in the country, with a view to stemming the embarrassing frequency of these tragedies.” Kalu in his statement commiserated with the victims of the fire outbreak in the popular Ochanja market, Onitsha, Anambra state. In the statement signed by his Special Assistant, Peter Eze, Kalu said he was deeply saddened by the destruction of lives, valuable goods and property in the inferno.
He said: “I share in the pain and anguish of all hardworking Nigerians who lost their loved ones, goods, wares and belongings in the unfortunate fire incident in Ochanja market. “Such incidents are preventable but for the nonchallant attitude of some vehicle owners.” Kalu was echoed by Ortom, who described in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Terver Akase the incident as devastating and unfortunate. He stressed the need for urgent steps to be taken to stem the spate of fire disasters in parts of the country while asking God to grant those who died in the Onitsha fire incident eternal rest and their families the strength to bear the loss, and wished the injured speedy recovery.