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Army Day Primary School: How woman lost four kids in Delta accident



TWENTY four hours after, personal effects of pupils of Army Day Primary School, Effurun, Delta state, still littered the spot where some of the pupils were crushed by a truck laden with fuel on Thursday..

The truck had, on Thursday, fallen on some pupils of the school who were returning home after closing hours along the NPA Expressway, opposite the school gate. It was earlier speculated on the day of the incident that six pupils died while some others who were injured were rushed to the hospital.

But Saturday Tribune later found out from eyewitnesses and residents around the area that the figure may be higher. When our reporter visited the scene on Friday, foot wares and personal effects were seen on the spot where the truck ran over the pupils. Scores of sympathisers were seen in groups, with hands wrapped around their chests, discussing the tragedy in hushed tones and in grief.

A few of them who granted some audience to our reporter did not disclose their identities just as the soldiers manning the army barracks did not grant our reporter entry into the school to speak with the authorities.

“I am a trailer driver. The incident happened around 2:30 p.m on Thursday. One of the drivers that loaded his trailer with PMS from one of the depots was going towards the roundabout.

“All of a sudden, he Iost control and the trailer fell on the pupils that came from the school (Army Day School) waiting for vehicles to convey them home, directly opposite the Army Barracks.

“Though people were saying that some injured were taken to the hospital, but with the position, the trailer fell. I’m not sure any of them survived. I’m sure they were up to 20,” he disclosed.

Another witness, who gave his name as Victor, claimed that he was related to the lady that reportedly lost four children to the accident. Asking him how old the children were, he said he couldn’t say because he had not seen them for long. According to him, the eldest one, a girl, should be 12 years old, adding that the deceased were two boys and two girls. A lady, who lives in the army barracks, claimed the mother of the four deceased children was with her children at the bus stop when the incident happened.

“Their mother came to pick them home from school. She had already crossed to the bus stop opposite the barracks with her children and had gone back to take her neighbour’s children.

“But immediately she left her children and crossed to the gate of the school, the trailer coming from NPA direction crashed on the children.

The woman, on seeing what had happened, fainted. “No fewer than 20 children were crushed by the trailer. It was a horrible sight. They had to pull the children from under the trailer. I’m not sure anyone survived. We all wept seeing mangled bodies of little, innocent children,” she lamented.

Meanwhile, chairman of Warri South Local Government Area, Dr Michael Tidi, has condoled with families of the pupils, the management of the school and chairman of Uvwie Local Government Area, Hon. Ramson Tega Onoyake.

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