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Six injured as dynamite explodes in Rivers market

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No fewer than six persons sustained various degrees of injury in an explosion at Mile Three Motor Park in Port Harcourt City Local Government Area of Rivers State.

The explosion emanated from a substance suspected to be a dynamite.

The Guardian learnt that the incident occurred yesterday at about 6:20 a.m., when traders were moving into the park with their goods to resume business.

Two persons allegedly sustained severe injuries on their legs while others, mostly women, suffered various injuries as a result of the ensuing stampede and were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

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When The Guardian visited, there was no death recorded as it was learnt that the detonators allegedly dropped the explosives on the ground with the intention to cause a scare and not to cause deaths.

However, the incident resulted in a pandemonium as residents and traders shut down their shops in fear.

Meanwhile, the state police command has confirmed the incident, reiterating that there was no death recorded.

The spokesperson for the command, SP Nnamdi Omoni, in a statement, said; “The police can confirm that there was an explosion this morning at the Mile 3 Market in the Port Harcourt Local Government Area of the state.

“A locally fabricated dynamite exploded when one Mrs. Ifemia Aloke, popularly known as ‘ Mama Joy,’ opened her fish shop, inflicting injuries on her son and another young lady, who are currently receiving medical attention but no life was lost in the incident.

“The Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) was immediately dispatched to the scene to sweep and render the entire market safe. Normal trading activities resumed immediately,” Omoni said.

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He noted that the command had commenced investigation into the incident with a view to ascertaining the cause of the explosion and bringing the perpetrators to justice.

He, however, urged residents of the state to remain calm and go about their lawful activities, reassuring them of the police’s commitment to combat all forms of crime.

Speaking with The Guardian, a trader at the Mile 3 market, Mrs. Magret Amadi, said: “Nobody saw the person that dropped the dynamite. What we just heard was the explosion.

She added that “though some casualties were recorded, no one died in the incident.”

Similarly, an official of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Moses Ucheoma, said despite earlier panic, calm and normal business had resumed at the park.

“For now, there is nothing to panic about. As you can see, people are going about their businesses.

“We advise the traders and workers to be careful and watch out for any suspicious movement that may pose danger,” Ucheoma added.

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