All Progressives Congress National Leader, Bola Tinubu, on Tuesday, sympathised with the families of the victims of an Abuja-Kaduna train attack.
Terrorists had attacked the Abuja-Kaduna train on Monday night with hundreds of passengers on board.
The former Lagos State governor from 1999 to 2007 said the attack by marauders on harmless passengers was a “national tragedy” and over 60 persons lost their lives to the terror.
He made this known at Eko Hotels in Lagos, the venue of the 13th Bola Ahmed Tinubu Colloquium with the theme, ‘Pivoting Nigeria Into The New Order’.
The APC presidential aspirant also cancelled his 13th Birthday Colloquium to honour the victims of the train attack.
He said, “Today is supposed to be a very joyful 70th birthday of mine living on earth. I give thanks to God Almighty for being able to survive to this age…
“I have just been informed of a very sad incident in our country, very sad indeed, that over 60 people and many more were killed and bombed on a train between Kaduna and Abuja just last night. That is a very serious incident about the security of lives in this country and it calls for a very serious sober reflection.
“For me to be here celebrating, dancing and enjoying myself doesn’t show enough concern of a statesman and a senior citizen of this country.
“This event should not be holding. I have consulted with the people you see around me here and they’ve agreed with me and being a very highly committed democrat, I have given myself to their suggestion that they agreed that this event be cancelled.”
The APC leader, alongside hundreds of others at the event, thereafter observed one-minute silence for the lives lost in the spirit of “national tragedy and concern”.
Tinubu urged the clergies at the event to pray for the repose of the soul of the departed and for comfort for their bereaved family members.
For years, Kaduna has become a killing field for bandits and terrorists who operate with ferocious fury while security agents allegedly looked away.
The killings have become more worrisome because the military has a heavy presence in Kaduna with no fewer than six military formations in the city. The military formations include Jaji Military Cantonment; 1 Mech. Division Headquarters, Nigerian Army, Kaduna; New Barracks, otherwise known as ‘Kotoko’ Barracks; Old Site of the Nigerian Defence Academy, Kaduna; Kalanpazi Barracks (Artillery Regiment) and the Nigerian Air Force Base.
The Kaduna State government had detailed a territory under siege in its novel annual security report 2020 when it said 937 persons died that year while 1,972 others were kidnapped. It also said 3,348 residents were kidnapped in 2021, and 1,192 deaths recorded, which is 27.21 per cent higher than the number killed in 2020.