Fifteen persons were reported dead in a truck accident in Iworoko Ekiti in Irepodun local government area of Ekiti State.
The accident occurred at about 8:45 pm on Saturday when the driver lost control of the truck and rammed into a night market, located at the centre of the town.
Some shops and a 10-seater commercial bus with passengers were also affected in the crash. Some residents and students charging their phones in a barber’s shop in the market were trapped in the accident.
Among those who died in the accident were students of the Ekiti State University (EKSU), Ado Ekiti, a corps member, a mother and her child, residents, and traders.
When journalists visited the scene of the mishap on Sunday morning, sympathisers gathered in the area with some wailing while others rained curses on the driver, Some bags of rice believed to have been loaded in the truck were all over the scene of the accident.
A towing vehicle of the state’s transport outfit, which came to the accident scene was stoned and chased away by some angry youths who accused the officers of coming too late to rescue the victims. Sources in the town said that the casualty figure would have been higher but for the ongoing strike embarked upon by the Academic Union of Universities (ASUU) which made most students of the EKSU who patronise the market when the institution is in session to have gone home.
The deputy governor, Chief Bisi Egbeyemi, visited the town on Sunday and sympathise with the people on behalf of governor Kayode Fayemi.
Egbeyemi told the chiefs and the angry youths that “the governor condoles with families of those who have lost dear ones. We pray for their souls to rest on peace. Government will also ensure that those who were wounded have their hospital bills paid for. We will also take care of other things.
“However, we appeal to our youths to calm down and not cause trouble. No one wishes for this kind of tragedy to happen. And no amount of anger and violence will bring back those dead. So let us be calm,” he said.
Egbeyemi, who also visited the Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital (EKSUTH) in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, where the bodies of the dead and the injured were taken, told the doctors on duty to begin urgent treatment of the wounded and assured them that their bills would be footed by the state government.
The hospital management told newsmen that 12 bodies, including students of EKSU had been deposited in the morgue while the four wounded victims were receiving treatment.
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