Rail travellers heading for Abuja were left stranded as suspected terrorists bombed the Abuja-Kaduna railway track which, according to sources, inflicted technical damage on the train that departed Kaduna for Abuja on Thursday morning, forcing the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC) to suspend train services along the route indefinitely.
The managing director of the NRC, Engr. Fidet Okhiria, who confirmed the attack, said explosives damaged the rail tracks somewhere between Dutse and Rijana.
“There was an explosion on our rail track somewhere around Rijana and Dutse last night, and this damaged the tracks. Efforts are currently ongoing to ensure that the train services along the Kaduna-Abuja route are fully restored,”
The NRC had, in a statement on its website, said the services were suspended for the safety of passengers and crew members.
The statement noted that efforts were being put in place to ensure absolute safety along the route, adding that further information concerning the suspension will be conveyed to the public shortly.
However, LEADERSHIP’s investigation revealed that the NRC had suspected that an attack could happen earlier in the week after the train crushed two masked men on the corridor.
One of the senior officials of the Corporation who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the train heading for Kaduna crushed the men when they were engaged in some illegal activities on the track on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Senator Shehu Sani had posted on his social media handle: ” Yesterday night bandits attacked the Kaduna-Abuja train. They planted an explosive that damaged the rail track and shattered the windshield of the train engine. They also opened fire, targeting the driver and the tank. It happened between Dutse and Rijana stations. The driver struggled to move towards Kaduna Rigasa station.
“This early morning, I was on board when our train ran over another explosive damaging railings. The train nearly skid off its path, then we miraculously escaped. All Kaduna Abuja train operations need to be suspended for today until this issue is addressed.”