• Wednesday, June 19, 2024
businessday logo

BusinessDay

Blood shortage hits Kaduna after train attack

Terror in the train

The terror attack on a Kaduna-bound train conveying over 900 passengers on Monday has led to blood shortage in the northwest Nigerian state as families of survivors scramble for blood donation online.

Several people were shot and injured as the armed bandits held the train hostage and kidnapped others, eyewitnesses reported.

This has driven the demand for blood sharply higher at the 44 Nigeria Army Reference Hospital, Badiko, Kaduna where most victims are being treated.

Numerous responses from willing blood donors to the cries for help are coming far outside Kaduna, from places such as Lagos, Ondo Owerri, Zaria and Abuja among others.

“They desperately need blood in Kaduna. Whatever blood type you are, today is a day people need you to donate. If you are O+, and can go to 44 please do,” Fakhrriyyah, a Twitter user appealed on Tuesday morning via the handle @FakhuusHashim.

By the time she made the call, she had found her aunt and uncle were trapped in the train, with the aunt shot. She said the attacks which had been festering unabated in several communities was gradually spreading to the city, with the bandits embolden government’s failure at security.

Read also: About 900 passengers feared kidnapped as bandits bomb Abuja-Kaduna train

Another Twitter user, Somto Onuchukwu via his handle @chosensomto posted “Blood donors needed at 44 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital Kaduna, if you are O+ and can get there now , please run there to help the victims of Abuja-Kaduna railway attack…Quote and spread the word”.

Sheik Baiita, @itx_Baiita, in his tweet on Teusday called on everyone fit in Kaduna save lives by donating blood.

Suggestion to reach out to Jela’s Development Initiative, a non-profit organisation that links blood donors with recipients in Kaduna were also offered.

A few others tagged the LifeBank, a medical logistics company that supplies blood across the country.

It is not clear yet how many victims are scattered around hospitals in Kaduna but online counts show at least two victims are dead including Megafu Chinelo, a medical doctor who worked St Gerald’s Hospital in Kaduna. She was alleged to have concluded plans to emigrate abroad before she got killed in the unfortunate attack.

BusinessDay earlier reported that hundreds of passengers travelling to Kaduna on Monday evening were kidnapped and several others injured in Dutse, Kaduna State by bandits.

A passenger, who survived the onslaught, said about 970 passengers might have been taken away into the bush by the rampaging bandits whom he said came on motorbikes wielding guns and other deadly weapons.

The incidence comes two days after an attack at the Kaduna Airport where two officials of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) were killed by the bandits with some other workers kidnapped.

The train took off at Idu station in Abuja at 6 pm and was billed to arrive Rigasa Train Station in Igabi local government area of Kaduna by 8pm.

Although the police authorities are yet to confirm the attack, BusinessDay gathered that the incident happened on Monday night.

The bandits reportedly attacked the train around Dutse axis in Kaduna, a few kilometres to Rigasa.

A source said the bandits bombed the train track with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED), grounding the train for them to attack.

Troops were later mobilised to the scene to rescue the remaining passengers.