Survivors of yesterday bomb explosions that killed five and injured 20 people in Kaduna metropolis told LEADERSHIP how they tried in vain to prevent the bomber from carrying out his deadly mission on a three-storey building along Kontagora?? road.
The bomber who drove inside the building housing ThisDay, The Sun and The Moment newspapers in a brand new Honda Academy with a registration AL306, planted the explosives and began to walk away but was accosted by passersby who were suspicious of his movement.
LEADERSHIP gathered that after the explosion, another 11 camp cylinder containing Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were found around the building and detonated by the Police Anti-bomb squad.
A survivor, Danjuma Abdulkadir, who is lying sick at the St. Gerard’s Catholic Hospital, told LEADERSHIP: “We were in my friend’s House along Jos Road, and all of the sudden we heard a voice outside that they have caught a man that wanted to plant a bomb in our vicinity along Kontogora.
My friend and I came out and saw a man amidst of the crowd. We were pushing the bomber to go and detonate the bomb inside his car. Immediately we got near the building, the bomb exploded.”
At Barau Dikko specialist hospital where four victims were in the intensive care unit, Haruna Ahmed, one of the survivors, told LEADERSHIP that he was on a motorcycle heading for his office to collect his salary when the bomb exploded, killing the commercial motorcyclist instantly but “God helped me to survive it.”
“I cannot explain what actually happened, but while we were approaching the place, we saw a crowd of people gathering around that place and we were wondering what happened. All of a sudden I heard a loud blast and I saw myself across the road while I saw the ‘okada’ man who carried me lifeless, with several others wounded,” he said.
According to ThisDay circulation clerk, Mr. Monday Emmanuel, who was in the office at the time of the incident, the bomber parked the car and started shouting that the car was going to explode.
“It was around 11am when Shehu (another employee) ran up to tell us that we should run. He said there was bomb within the premises and we should run. At first we thought he was joking, but we noticed that he was dead serious. So we ran for our dear lives. We left the premises before the bomb finally exploded.
“The bomber was pursued by people around the neighbourhood. He was caught and beaten seriously. Everybody along the street was gripped by fear and confusion,” he said.
A 22-year-old man, Jamil Abubakar, who was at the building when the bomber drove in, noted that the man drove the Honda car vey dangerously into the office complex.
He narrates what happened: “I was coming from the other end. I saw it. He crashed on the wall. He came out of the car and started chanting laila inlala u. He then started shouting ‘bomb! bomb! bomb! People ran to him and grabbed him.
“They started beating him. They said he had to show them the bomb. He was taken to the car. He opened the bonnet of the car and quickly took what looked like a bomb to me.
“But I saw when he flung the bomb over the gate of the complex and it fell on some of the people waiting outside to see what was happening. It exploded with a loud bang. I ran away. Fire started because some cars and motor bikes caught fire. I came back and saw three corpses. I counted them – they were three. But there were some people that were injured. Some of them were badly hurt.
“In the commotion that ensued, the man that came with the car escaped and hid in some part of the complex. But he was later arrested by the Police.”