From tony osauzo, Benin Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure, and Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
At least, 26 people including five children died in three accidents at Ogoneki in Edo, off Asaba-Benin Expressway on Thursday, Okitipupa area of Ondo State and Ijebu Igbo area of Ogun State on Friday.
Mr Samuel Odukoya, Edo State Sector Commander of the FRSC, said in Benin City that the Thursday accident which involved a trailer and a passenger bus occurred at 4.30 p.m.. He said 24 persons were trapped in the accident involving the trailer with registration no. DRZ 374 XA and a Toyota bus marked ABD 206 XA.
Odukoya said 16 people died on Thursday while three other persons died in hospital on Friday. According to him, five others sustained injuries.
“The trip was from Benin to Auchi and the accident was attributed to dangerous overtaking. Three females, 11 males, a female child and four male children were killed in the accident, while five men were injured and have been taken to the hospital,” the commander said.
In a similar incident, a reckless driver yesterday killed three commercial motorcyclists popularly called okada operators in Okitipupa, headquarters of Okitipupa Local Government Area of Ondo State.
The ugly incident however led to protest by okada operators in the town, as many of them took to the streets to protest the killing of their colleagues.
It was gathered that the three persons killed by the yet to be identified driver were at a junction beside the Ondo State General Hospital, Okitipupa before the vehicle rammed into them.
A source said the driver drove a Toyota Picnic space bus and was heading towards the hospital when he hit the three men. The victims were said to have died instantly, and immediately taken to the hospital where they were confirmed dead.
As a result of the development, the commercial riders mobilised and burnt down the car in an attempt to kill the driver who eventually escaped.
The Public Relations Officer (PRO) for the state Police Command, Mr. Femi Joseph confirmed the incident, saying that men of the command have been deployed to the area to restore normalcy.
Also in Ogun State tragedy struck on Friday morning in Etokori area of Ijebu Igbo, when a log laden truck rammed into the town Eid Praying Ground, killing four persons and injuring many other worshippers.
Other two victims were security operatives and the duo were said to be a police officer and an officer of the Nigeria Civil Defence and Security Corps.
Confirming the accident, the Public Relations Officer of the Ogun State Traffic Compliance and Enforcement Corps (TRACE), Babatunde Akinbiyi, said the accident occurred when the Eid prayer was about to commence.
The vehicle, a Bedford truck with registration number AA 523 JGB, Akinbiyi explained, had brake failure, lost control and ran into a Toyota pick up with registration number APP 995 DD, parked beside the praying ground.
The truck, which reportedly damaged the Toyota Pick-Up, ran over two children at the praying ground, killing them instantly, while several other Muslim faithful sustained various degree of injuries, including some security operatives.
Meanwhile, corpses of the victims had been deposited at the morgue of the General Hospital, Ijebu Igbo, while the injured were also taken to the same hospital for treatment.