Explosion kills 12 in Nigerian capital, Abuja

2014-05-02 07:44
The new calculations showed that the economy grew $453bn in 2012 and expects a jump to $509bn for 2013. (Shutterstock)

The new calculations showed that the economy grew $453bn in 2012 and expects a jump to $509bn for 2013. (Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Abuja - A car bomb exploded on a busy road in Nigeria's capital late on Thursday, killing at least 12 people days before the city is to host a major international economic forum.

The bomb exploded near a checkpoint across the road from a busy bus station where a massive explosion on 14 April killed at least 75 people. That blast was claimed by the Islamic extremist Boko Haram terrorist network.

Thursday's bomb comes days before Abuja is to host the World Economic Forum on Africa, with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang as an honoured guest.

The government is deploying 6 000 police to protect the 7-9 May event, which attracts world leaders, policymakers, philanthropists and business leaders to discuss Africa's economic growth prospects.

Civil Defence Corps spokesperson Emmanuel Okeh said rescuers with ambulances and fire engines rushed to the scene of the blast on May Day, a public holiday in the West African nation.

Twelve people have been killed and 19 wounded are in hospitals, according to Superintendent Frank Mba, the national police spokesperson. He said six cars were burnt up.

Witnesses said a car laden with explosives drove close to the checkpoint and a man jumped out and ran as it blew up.

A deafening explosion was followed by smaller ones as other cars caught fire and fuel ignited, they said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of fears for their safety. Mba said six cars were burnt up.

Growing embarrassment

Lines of traffic are normal at the checkpoint where soldiers and police search vehicles since the bombing two weeks ago.

Two unexploded IEDs were found at the scene, according to a security official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to speak to reporters. Islamic militants in Nigeria often time secondary explosions to target rescuers and others drawn to a bombing.

While there was no immediate claim for Thursday's bombing, it bears all the hallmarks of Boko Haram, whose name means "Western education is sinful". The group wants to create an Islamic state in Nigeria, which it claims would halt crippling corruption that keeps 70% of the people in Africa's richest nation impoverished.

Hours after the 14 April car bombing, which wounded at least 141 people, Boko Haram militants kidnapped more than 250 teenage girls at a school in the remote northeast, which is their stronghold.

 At least 50 of the girls escaped their captors, but 200 remain missing in a growing embarrassment for Nigeria's government and military.

The attacks have undermined government and military assurances that the Islamic extremists had been contained in a north-eastern corner of the country.

Every time the military trumpets a success against the militants, they step up the tempo and deadliness of attacks. More than 1 500 people have died in the Islamic uprising this year, compared to 3 600 between 2010 and 2013.

President Goodluck Jonathan told a May Day rally in Abuja earlier on Thursday that the perpetrators must be brought justice.

Greatest threat

"We shall triumph over all this evil that wants to debase our humanity or obstruct our progress as a nation," he vowed. "Those who want to re-define our country to be seen as a country of chaos will never succeed."

Last week, he assured the Chinese ambassador that the hundreds of delegates expected at the World Economic Forum on Africa "will not have a problem with security during the summit".

Abuja, in the heart of the country and far from Boko Haram's north-eastern stronghold, had remained relatively peaceful since a 2011 suicide car bombing of the local UN headquarters that killed 21 people and wounded 60.

Nigeria is Africa's biggest oil producer and is the continent's most populous nation. Its 170 million people are almost equally divided between Christians and Muslims. The uprising poses the greatest threat to Nigeria's cohesion and security and imperils nearby countries where its fighters have gone to train. Fighters from Chad, Cameroon and Niger have been found among extremists in Nigeria.

In May 2013, Jonathan declared a state of emergency and deployed thousands of troops to the northeast after the extremists took control of entire towns and villages. Security forces quickly forced the insurgents out of urban areas but have been battling to dislodge them from hideouts in forests and mountain caves along the border with Cameroon and Chad.

Near-daily air bombardments of that area have halted since the girls and young women were abducted.

Governors and traditional leaders in the northeast have demanded that Jonathan end the state of emergency, which is due for renewal mid-May, saying it is causing suffering and has not been effective. At least 750 000 people have been forced from towns and villages, including tens of thousands of farmers, risking a food shortage.
- AP

Read more on:    un  |  boko haram  |  goodluck jonathan  |  nigeria  |  west africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
6 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Fashion
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Friday Cape Town - 16:15 PM
    Road name: Wet Weather
    RAIN across the greater Cape Town area - drive with care and use headlights - Allow Extra Tavel Time
  • Friday Kuils River - 09:28 AM
    Road name: Polkadraai Road Eastbound
    ROADWORKS between the R102 Van Riebeeck Road and the R310 Baden Powell Drive exit - DELAYS
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2 TV Series for R250

Get 2 TV Series box sets for R250 and save up to R148! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Samsung Galaxy Tab P7500 10.1" Tablet With WiFi & 3G

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 gives you a better experience for...

From R4999.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

The day may have a fluctuating sensitive energy to begin with, but later when the Moon moves into dramatic and creative Leo you...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.