OrderPaperToday – The Senate today resolved to direct the appropriate committee when constituted to liaise with relevant agencies, organizations and stakeholders to identify the remote and immediate causes of incessant petroleum tanker explosions in the country and recommend appropriate solutions.
The resolution followed a motion by Senator Emmanuel Orker-Jev (PDP, Benue) titled “Benue Tanker explosion: urgent need to curb incessant explosions of Petroleum Tankers in Nigeria”.
Speaking on his motion, Orker-Jev disclosed that a petroleum tanker explosion occurred in Ahumbe village, along Makurdi-Aliade-Otukpo Federal Highway in Gwer East Local Government Area of Benue State on Monday 19th July, 2019.
He stated that the driver of the tanker lost control of the vehicle while trying to dodge a pothole and crashed by the roadside.
According to the Senator, “people from the nearby villages defied warning from security personnel and were scooping fuel from the fallen tanker, then a passenger bus maneuvering its way suddenly scratched its exhaust on the road which sparked the fire, killing over 50 people while over 100 others secured various degrees of burns and injuries.”
He added that the death toll could rise as many of the injured were in critical conditions at the Benue State University Teaching Hospital (BSUTH) even as nearby houses, shops, cars and other valuable properties were also burnt down during the explosion.
The Senate commiserated with the people and Government of Benue State over the incident and observed a minute silence for the dead. The red chamber also called on the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Federal Ministry of Health to quickly intervene and assist the affected families and victims undergoing medical attention in different hospitals.
Furthermore, the upper chamber urged FERMA, VIO, and other relevant agencies to ensure road maintenance and proper vehicle inspection.