News

Eyewitness Describes Deadly Aftermath of Nigeria Easter Bombing

Security personnel inspect the mangled remains of bomb-laden car that exploded along junction road near a church, Kaduna, Nigeria, April 8, 2012.
Security personnel inspect the mangled remains of bomb-laden car that exploded along junction road near a church, Kaduna, Nigeria, April 8, 2012.

Multimedia

Audio
Ricci Shryock

Shortly after a car bomb exploded on Easter Sunday in Kaduna, Nigeria, Hafsat Mohamed Baba rushed to the scene to assist with the wounded.

Once there, the opposition politician accompanied an injured 11-year-old girl to a nearby hospital, where Baba saw the bodies of several who had already died.

“There are so many casualties. When I visited the hospital, people were laying on the floor, some were in the [operating] theater, some with their bellies open, intestines out, people were bleeding and the nurses and the doctors were running helter-skelter looking for blood.”

Officials say the bomb outside a church killed at least 20 people.

Baba, a leader in the Action Congress of Nigeria party, said the blast was “in the heart of Kaduna” - her hometown.

“There are people on bikes, there are people in the taxis, it’s a commercial area and there are so many people there - buses coming to drop people and to pick people from the bus stop - it is really a congested area.”

She added the scene at 44 Army Reference Hospital, where many of the wounded were being treated, was chaotic.

“There were so many injured people, actually some very serious,” she said of the scene. “In fact some were even in the [operating] theater,” Baba said. “There were really more than 20… so many people.”

As of late Sunday, no group had claimed responsibility for the bombing, though militant anti-government sect Boko Haram is known for staging large attacks against Christians during holidays. Experts say the Islamist group has splintered into many factions of varying extremism, some of which claim ties to regional Al-Qaeda franchises.

“Yes there are speculations, because for something of this nature, people feel that it is Boko Haram, even though the Boko Haram has not come out to claim the responsibility,” said Baba. “But people are really more concerned about the causalities. A lot of people have lost their loved ones.”

She said the streets of normally lively Kaduna were extremely quiet Sunday night.

“The streets are virtually almost deserted. But you see a few cars. The security has been zipped up really tight,” she said. “People are so moody, especially this festive period, people were not expecting to have anything like that. Actually the whole atmosphere is really that of, people are really disturbed.”

Baba added that Christians and Muslims in Kaduna usually live together in peace.

“Actually there’s harmony between the religions and there’s good understanding,” she said “People engage themselves, both religions, there’s not actually that kind of divide. We work together, we eat together, we dance together, we celebrate together.”

Nigeria’s government has offered cash rewards for information about Boko Haram. However, despite assurances that their cooperation would remain confidential, residents have said they are scared of reprisal attacks.

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Talha
April 10, 2012 10:44 AM
"When will moderate Isllamic leaders condemn Boko Haram?"

Many already have, including the Sultan of Sokoto; Muslim clerics who criticize the group have already been targeted by this group and the Sultan of Sokoto has been given a warning that they will strike in Sokoto if their members are not released. Please do research before asking an obviously biased rhetorical question.

by: Gerrit
April 09, 2012 3:39 AM
When will moderate Isllamic leaders condemn Boko Haram?

by: Kingsley
April 09, 2012 2:29 AM
Evil will get tired someday.... and good will reign

by: Kathleen
April 08, 2012 6:03 PM
Why do we always have to fight over religion and why does mankind think that violence is the only answer.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iran Nuclear Pact Wins Few New US Congressional Backersi
X
Michael Bowman
July 26, 2015 8:44 PM
Later this week, President Barack Obama returns from a trip to Africa to confront a U.S. Congress roiled by the nuclear accord with Iran, an agreement that has received the blessing of the U.N. Security Council. Days of intensive lobbying and testimony by top administration officials have won few new congressional supporters of the pact. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports.
Video

Video Iran Nuclear Pact Wins Few New US Congressional Backers

Later this week, President Barack Obama returns from a trip to Africa to confront a U.S. Congress roiled by the nuclear accord with Iran, an agreement that has received the blessing of the U.N. Security Council. Days of intensive lobbying and testimony by top administration officials have won few new congressional supporters of the pact. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports.
Video

Video Underground Streetcar Station In Washington, DC, to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Obama Encourages Kenya to Fix Cultures of Corruption, Discrimination

President Barack Obama bid farewell to Kenya Sunday with a major speech at as stadium outside the capital Nairobi where he called on Kenyans to change the cultures of corruption and discrimination that can hold society back. VOA East Africa Correspondent Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.
Video

Video Racially Diverse Spider-Man Takes Center Stage

Whether it’s in a comic book or on the big screen, fans have always known the man behind the Spider-Man mask as Peter Parker. But that is changing, at least in the comic book world. Marvel Comics announced that a character called Miles Morales will replace Peter Parker as Spider-Man in a new comic book series. He is half Latino, half African American, and he is quite popular among comic book fans. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles.
Video

Video California Towns Welcome Special Olympics Athletes

Cities and towns in Southern California are greeting thousands of athletes who are arriving for Special Olympics, a competition for people with intellectual disabilities. The games will run from July 25th through August 2nd. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, where athletes from Namibia, Singapore and Tanzania got a rousing welcome from local residents.
Video

Video Critics of Japan Defense Policy Focus on Okinawa

In Okinawa, many locals have long complained that Tokyo places an unfair burden on the tiny island by locating most of Japan's U.S. military bases there. As Japan's government moves toward strengthening and expanding the country's defense policies, opponents of those plans are joining local protesters in Okinawa, voicing concern about where the country is headed. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Okinawa.
Video

Video IS Uses Chemical Weapons in Syrian Attack

Islamic State militants have added a new weapon in their arsenal of fear: chemical weapons. VOA Kurdish service reporter Zana Omer was on the scene within hours of a recent attack in Hasakah, Syria, and has details of the subsequent investigation, in this report narrated by Miguel Amaya.
Video

Video Historic Symbol Is Theme of Vibrant New Show

A new exhibit in Washington is paying tribute to the American flag with a wide and eclectic selection of artwork that uses the historic symbol as its central theme. VOA’s Julie Taboh was at the DC Chamber of Commerce for the show’s opening.
Video

Video Hoverbike Flying Toward Reality

Another long-standing dream of many technological inventors is quickly approaching reality: U.S.- and British-based firms are cooperating in the development of an individual flying platform they call a hoverbike. They say it may revolutionize the concept of flying, including in the U.S. military. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video As Japan Expands Defense Role, Protests Follow

The Japanese government is moving forward with a controversial security bill that would authorize the military to fight abroad for the first time since World War II. Leaders say it is critical to defend against rising threats from China and North Korea. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Japan on the big changes ahead, and the opposition they are drawing.
Video

Video Rise in HIV Infections Worries Ugandan Officials

Uganda had the third-highest number of new HIV infections in sub-Saharan Africa last year, reversing its reputation for successfully tackling the epidemic in the 1990s. Although the percentage of people living with HIV/AIDS is still half of what it was in the 1980s, the increase in new infections is worrying to health workers. VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
Video

Video Replacing Poppies with Coffee in Myanmar

The remote mountains of Myanmar’s Shan state are home to the second-largest opium-producing region in the world. After a drop during the 2000s, production surged in the past eight years to feed an increasing demand for heroin in China. But farmers are now making less on the crop, and the U.N. is hoping many will make the switch to growing coffee. Daniel de Carteret reports for VOA from Taunggyi.

VOA Blogs