Bomb blast mars Nigeria’s 50th celebrations

At least seven people have been killed in explosions in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, marring celebrations to mark 50 years since independence from the UK.

Police have confirmed that two blasts outside the justice ministry were caused by car bombs.

Earlier, the militant group Mend (Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta) had threatened to target the festivities.

Nigeria is a major oil producer, yet most of the population live in poverty.

The explosions were not heard at Eagle Square nearby, where the Nigerian elite had gathered for the celebrations.

President Good luck Jonathan was inspecting a guard of honour when the bombs went off.

‘Nothing to celebrate’

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (Mend), a militant group in the oil-rich south, issued a threat on Friday morning saying it intended to bomb the event.

In the message, the group which is demanding a fairer distribution of the country’s oil revenues, said there was “nothing worth celebrating after 50 years of failure”.

If Mend militants are responsible for the blasts, it would be the first time that the group has targeted the capital.

At least one of the dead is a police officer.

The BBC’s Ahmed Idris in Abuja says he saw bloody footprints at the scene as emergency workers moved bodies into vehicles.

Our reporter says there may have been a smaller third explosion within the parade ground. Security staff said at the time a gun had gone off accidentally.

Source: BBC

  1. ONEIL says

    we chose to celebrate instead of mourning
    lets see hw far the country can go celebrating in pretense

  2. Tai Olusoccer says

    This is horrendoius. may God purnish the perpetrators. we are not as bad as portrayed. WE have all reasons to celebrate. the problem is theirs, we need to apologize to the international community. we have not failed as a nation. period.

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