The Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC) has announced the immediate suspension of rail service operations on the Abuja-Kaduna route following alleged detonation of explosives on the train track by bandits.

The overnight attack which was reported to have occurred between Wednesday night and Thursday morning left passengers traumatised, with witnesses reporting that the attackers also fired live rounds into driver compartments.

This was confirmed by NRC in a statement on Thursday in which it said that services on that route had been halted to ensure safety of the passengers as investigations were ongoing to determine if the facility was actually bombed as widely speculated.

What they are saying

NRC said, “Due to unforeseen circumstances, train services have been immediately suspended for the safety of our dear passengers. Efforts are in place to restore service. Further information would follow immediately service is restored.”

Also, a former Senator from Kaduna State, Shehu Sani, posted on his verified Twitter handle that bandits attacked a train on the route on Wednesday.

Sani said “Yesterday (Wednesday) terrorists attacked the Kaduna-Abuja railway with an explosive and opened fire on the train, targeting the engine driver and the tank.

“This (Thursday) morning, I was onboard when our train ran over another explosive damaged rail.

The Abuja/Kaduna Train Service Station Manager, Paschal Nnorli, confirmed to a correspondent that there was an attack on the train, but could not tell if it was with an explosive.

Nnorli said, “Yes, there was an attack, but right now I cannot confirm if it was an explosive or bomb attack as people are saying.’’

“Investigations are ongoing and I’ll give you updates as they come in. Out engineers have been mobilised to the area. And right now we have suspended services.”

Bottom line

Nigeria has been faced with a lot of security challenges in recent times with the northwestern part of the country bedevilled by terrorist and banditry attacks.

This attack will be a serious setback on rail services on that route as most passengers had embraced rail transportation as a safer mode of transportation due to attacks by bandits and kidnappers along the expressway.

The suspension could leave thousands of passengers stranded across the country who had embraced rail transportation following repeated attacks by bandits that have rendered road transportation too dangerous