NRC Announces Indefinite Suspension of Edo Train Service Over Abduction

Mary Ugwuanyi

The Nigeria Railway Corporation, NRC, has announced an indefinite shutdown of Ekehen Station in Edo State.  

It said the decision was reached due to security challenges.

The development happens barely one year after the March 28, 2022 attack by suspected terrorists on the Abuja-Kaduna train, which culminated in the death of about 14 passengers while 65 others were kidnapped.

The NRC in a statement posted on the passengers’ WhatsApp group said that the closure was “till further notice.”

The statement reads, “Public Announcement: This is to inform our general public and most especially our esteemed passengers, that Ekehen Station has been temporarily closed due to security issues, till further notice.”

Another notice reads, “Due to the incident at Ekehen station on Saturday, WITS 01/ 02 will no longer stop at Ekehen Station. Please advise our customers.”

Gunmen had on Saturday abducted several passengers waiting to board a train from the Igueben station in Igueben Local Government Area of Edo State to Warri in Delta State, while several others sustained injuries.

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The incident was confirmed in a statement by the Edo State Police Command spokesperson, Chidi Nwabuzor.

Nwabuzor said the abductors, armed with AK 47, invaded the train station and shot sporadically into the air before abducting scores of intending travelers into the bush.

He said, “This is to inform the gentlemen of the press that on January 7, 2023, at about 1600hrs, an unspecified number of herdsmen armed with AK-47 riffles attacked the train station at Igueben, Edo State and kidnapped an unspecified number of passengers who were waiting to board the train to Warri.

“The kidnappers who shot sporadically into the air before kidnapping some passengers left some persons with bullet wounds. The Area Commander Irrua, DPO Igueben Division, and men have visited the scene of the crime with members of the Edo State Security Network, local vigilantes, and hunters with a view to protecting the lives and property of the remaining passengers.

“Bush combing operations have commenced in order to rescue the victims and arrest the fleeing kidnappers. Further developments will be communicated.”

Source: Punch

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