Tragedies are constant. And in 2020, there were moments that broke our hearts immensely. From gruesome attacks to unexpected mishaps and events that claimed lives and properties, some of these tragedies raised questions about security in Nigeria.
Here are 10 Tragedies we won’t forget from 2020.
1. Auno attack: On February 9, a group of heavily armed men in trucks carried out an attack of mass killings, looting, arson and kidnapping against residents in Auno, Borno State, northeastern Nigeria. According to reports, the event led to the destruction of lives and properties – Thirty lives were said to have been lost.
2. Abule-Ado explosion: The Abule-Ado explosion was an accidental explosion that occurred in the Abule-Ado area of Festac Town, Lagos. The explosion and fire lasted for over ten hours and claimed the lives of 23 persons, 25 injured persons and 50 houses destroyed.
3. Akure Explosion: In March, an explosion rocked Ondo capital city, Akure, wreaking havoc and making a crater on the Akure-Owo highway. The Akure explosion inflicted injuries on at least 13 persons and lead to the destruction of not less than 70 buildings including churches and schools around the area.
4. Rape Epidemic: In 2020, there were a number of cases that drew the attention on social injustices, rape and gender-based violence in 2020. From stories bordering on rape that led to the loss of life of the victims – like Uwaila Vera Omozuwa, Favour Okechukwu, among others – 2020 was that year that created the awareness against these social injustices and ultimately led to the demand for a better and safer society.
5. Ifako-Ijaye gas explosion: In September, a dispute between a truck driver and his supervisor led to gas explosion in Ifako-Ijaye area of Lagos. According to reports. at least 30 persons were injured from the explosion.
6. Zabarmari Massacre: In November, reports of a tragic massacre surfaced on the news. Locals have reported the gruesome killing of over 100 rice farmers in Zabarmari, and villages near Maiduguri. The attack took place in the village of Koshobe near the main city of Maiduguri, with assailants targeting farmers on rice fields. The Borno governor, Babagana Umara Zulum, attended the burial in the nearby village of Zabarmari where 43 bodies were buried.
7. Southern Kaduna Killings: The Southern Kaduna Killings remains one of the saddest events of 2020. The incident which was said to be influenced by tribal and religious differences claimed the lives of locals in the state. While a similar incident had happened before in the state and over the same reasons, Nigerians, in the wake of the incident called for a quick solution to the issue.
8. Lekki Shootings: Tuesday, 20 October 2020, Nigerians witnessed what has now been described as the darkest event of 2020. Protesters at the Lekki Tollgate area of Lagos were said to have been shoot by members of the Nigerian Army after Lagos governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu placed the state in a curfew. The Lekki incident which claimed the lives of protesters is one event that many Nigerians won’t be forgetting anytime soon.
9. Oyigbo Massacre: In October, while Nigerians were agitated by the aftermath of the Lekki Massacre, there were reports of killings in Oyinbo area of Rivers State. According to state residents, men in Military uniforms and armed targeted residents over some political unrest that has long existed in the state between the government and locals from Oyinbo.
10. Kankara School Boys Abduction: In December, there were reports of kidnap of over 300 boys in an all boys secondary school in Kankara, a town in Katsina. The school was reportedly attacked by gunmen on motorcycles who had engaged security operatives in a shootout. The story created the #BringBackOurBoys on social media as many Nigerians called on stakeholders of the government to address the security challenges that has riddled the country for the longest part.
Michael is a dynamic writer who is still exploring the nuances of life and being human. When I’m not writing, I’m out with friends or spending nice time alone watching movies or TV Shows.
Michael is available on Twitter and Instagram @TheMichaelFaya