The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has expressed shock and says it is deeply grieved by the devastating petrol tanker accident that claimed the lives of no fewer than 25 compatriots including a whole family, students and school children in an inferno in Felele area of Lokoja, the Kogi state capital.
A statement issued by Kola Ologbondiyan, National Publicity Secretary in Abuja on Thursday said the party is extremely distressed by “this horrid and traumatizing incident, which, in a very painful manner, cut short the lives of hardworking compatriots, brought instant anguish to families and painful material losses to many.”
The statement said is even more disturbing that the fire raged without any intervention by authorities, which would have helped mitigate the effect.
The statement added: “Indeed, the absence of fire and other emergency facilities around the area, despite the frequent occurrence of such accidents in the past signposts the failure and insensitivity of both the Federal and Kogi state governments towards the dangers that daily confront the people.
“Also, the major theatre of medical intervention in the state, the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Lokoja, had been under locks over a needless controversy on COVID-19.
“The recklessness of the state government has also increased the fatalities of the number of victims affected in the ugly incident.
“Furthermore, our party is shocked by the response of the Kogi State Deputy Governor, Edward Onoja, who, instead of assuring of a definite step to safeguard the lives of the people in the area, dwelt on lame excuses, when he visited the scene of the accident.”
The PDP demanded that the Federal Government put instant traffic measures to forestall such accidents as well as immediately establish emergency facilities in the area.
It also called on President Muhammadu Buhari and the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fasola, “to leave the comfort of their offices in Abuja and immediately visit the area as well as undertake a tour of our highways to witness the sorry state of infrastructure across our country, under their administration.”
“Indeed, the PDP mourns. Our thoughts and prayers go to the families of the victims of this accident as well as others who have perished in various road accidents due to the horrible state of our roads,” the statement said.
The PDP commiserated with the families of the victims, the Kogi State Polytechnic, parents of the school children as well as the entire people of Kogi state.
It prayed God to grant the bereaved families the fortitude to bear their grief as well as speedy recovery for the wounded.