No fewer than five people died while several other persons sustained varying degree of injuries as a kerosene-laden tank exploded at popular Kubwa Village Market in Abuja on Friday night.
The incident happened at the junction leading to the L.E.A Primary School, Jaji Street, and few metres away from St Luke Catholic Church.
A News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reporter saw bodies of the victims being evacuated by the combined team of officers of the Nigerian Police, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Fire Service, among others.
The inferno, which gutted the adjoining shops in the area, was extinguished by the Fire Service men.
A witness, Mr Chima Nnamdi, told NAN that the sad event occurred at about 7:15pm.
Nnamdi said he had, so far, counted at least five bodies, some of which were burnt beyond recognition.
He said several other people, who sustained injuries, had been taken to Kubwa General Hospital.
He said that the kerosene might be an adulterated product.
Another witness, who identified herself as Jennifer, said the kerosene seller and her two children also died in the fire incident.
The Kubwa Police Area Commander, ACP Mohammed Ndagi Shebe, who confirmed the incident, debunked the rumour that it was a bomb explosion.
“You can see it yourself,” he said as he flashed a torchlight to the kerosene tank which caused the explosion.
According to him, it was kerosene surface tank that exploded.
“That is what brought the inferno,” he added.
He said he could not confirm if the kerosene was an adulterated one.
The senior police officer said four dead bodies had so far been evacuated from the scene.
The Police Public Relations Officer, FCT Command, DSP Josephine Adeh, however, told NAN in a telephone chat that she was yet to be briefed about the incident.