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Seven People Confirmed Dead, Many Injured Including A Former Zamfara Deputy Governor, As NRC Suspends Abuja-Kaduna Operation

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Seven people have been confirmed dead in the attack by bandits on the Abuja-Kaduna passenger train.

This was confirmed by the Managing Director of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), Engineer Fidet Okhiria.

Speaking to Nigerian Tribune on phone, the MD who was on his way to Abuja to monitor development at the scene of the attack, said, “What we have been told for now is that seven people are dead. I am however at the airport in Lagos right now. I have to get there to monitor developments myself.”

Recall that following the attack by the terrorists, the NRC had earlier in the day announced suspension of the Abuja-Kaduna passenger train services for the foreseeable future, noting that the move is for the safety of travellers.

The corporation however, said it was working to restore the service, and would inform the public when the train will start running again.

Meanwhile, Musa Usman, one of the passengers in the train, said the bandits forced their way into the VIP coach as well as coach 17 where they kill and abducted many passengers.

He said the bandits came in vans, not motorcycles, and those abducted were forced into the vans.

“They continued to shoot and those who didn’t know what was happening at the beginning were hit by stray bullets.”

He, however, said a team of soldiers led by GOC 1 division, Kaduna, moved in around 10pm, forcing the bandits to retreat with the abducted passengers.

“The terrain was very rocky and hilly which made evacuation very difficult,” he said, adding that they had waited for others to be evacuated before they trekked out of the forest to the main road.

“We waited there for military buses which arrived to evacuate us, and we left there around 2am. We did not go to the train station as relatives were already waiting by the Leventist bridge around the central market, we saw many of them disturbed and expectant but the soldiers did not stop there, we proceeded to 44 Reference hospital.”

Another passenger revealed that from the main road where they entered the military buses to Kaduna was about 45 kilometers.

He said among those shot was a former Deputy Governor of Zamfara State who was shot on both legs.

“We heard many people saying he is a former deputy Governor but I cannot say which of the former deputy governors,” he said.

Recall that the terrorists planted explosives on the rail tracks and bombed the train just before Rijana, a community along the rail line in Kaduna.