…Calls for Justice, Accountability
Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has strongly condemned the tragic tanker explosion that claimed the lives of at least 20 people along the Warri-Benin Highway in the Warri North local government area of Delta state on Sunday, October 1, 2023.
According to reports, the explosion was caused by a spark from a faulty vehicle while individuals were attempting to scoop fuel that had spilled from the tanker. Among the victims were a pregnant woman, children, and elderly individuals.
Despite warnings from drivers and security personnel who arrived at the scene upon hearing about the fallen tanker, some people rushed to collect fuel. An eyewitness revealed that the explosion happened around 12:15 am, causing panic and leading to casualties. At the scene, burnt vehicles, including the exploded tanker, and some bodies burnt beyond recognition were visible.
The Human right in a statement by its national coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko expressed its deepest condolences to the families of the deceased and prayed for the speedy recovery of those who sustained injuries.
The association also demanded that the government and business owners who put the lives of citizens at such risks must be made to pay heavy compensation to the families of the casualties and should be prosecuted for criminal negligence which resulted in such a catastrophe.
They further called for a clear legislative template by state houses of assembly to criminalise such acts of negligence and disregard for human lives. The association lamented that Nigeria has become the most dangerous place on earth for humans to live due to lack of good governance, poor law enforcement and criminal negligence by both businesses and government to consider the lives of citizens as sacrosanct and inviolable.
The group urged the relevant authorities to conduct a thorough investigation into the incident and ensure that those responsible are brought to justice.