In connection with the recent explosion in Bodija, Ibadan, the Oyo State government has identified three people for possible legal action. These people are the primary tenant’s relatives, both close and distant, who reportedly departed Nigeria three years ago for health-related reasons. Furthermore, there are those who may have fled the explosion site who are originally from Mali.
During a press briefing at the governor’s office in Ibadan, Mr. Fatai Owoseni, the Special Adviser to the Governor of Oyo, provided updates on the investigation into the Bodija explosion.
Owoseni emphasised the challenge of finding those who escaped to Mali when the nation withdrew from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and said that Interpol’s assistance would be requested in order to capture these people.
While the inquiry is still ongoing, it was discovered that, despite having been questioned, a name that has been widely shared on social media in relation to the explosion did not have a clear connection to the occurrence. According to Owoseni, three people in particular are presently being investigated and may be charged right away because of their presence on the property at the time of the occurrence and the information gleaned during their interrogation.
Regarding the nature of the explosion, it was identified as caused by a water gel explosive activated by an electric spark. In the aftermath, the Nigerian Institution of Structural Engineers, led by Mr. Mbim Okutiyang, conducted integrity tests on nearby structures. Out of 282 examined homes within a 500-meter radius of the explosion site, four were deemed unsafe and marked for demolition. Attempts were made to assess 423 houses within a 1-kilometer diameter, but access to 141 was not possible. The remaining 278 houses were considered safe, albeit requiring repairs for damages such as roof damage, broken doors, and windows.
On the health front, Professor Temitope Alonge, the incident manager, reported that only five of the 80 affected individuals remain hospitalized, with treatments ranging from spinal cord injury management to surgeries for lower limb injuries. Additionally, four individuals are being treated for perforated eardrums caused by the blast’s intensity, with some needing surgical repair. Residents experiencing respiratory issues or symptoms like coughing, throat soreness, or bronchitis are advised to seek medical assistance from the Emergency Operations Centre. Furthermore, a clinical psychologist has been arranged to support victims and locals in coping with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, manifesting as irritability, agitation, insomnia, depression, and withdrawal.