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Imo Tragedy: Buhari orders clampdown on illegal refineries

The illegal refinery site in Imo state where over 100 people were reportedly burnt to death after a blast.

President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the nation’s armed forces, security and intelligence agencies to intensify the clampdown on illegal refineries.

President Buhari’s directive came hot on the heels of the reported deaths of many people on Friday night after an illegal refinery exploded at Abaezi forest in the Ohaji-Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State.

Reacting to what he described in a statement as a “catastrophe and a national disaster”, the President said responsibility for the loss of lives and property must lie with the sponsors of the illegal refinery, “who must all be caught and made to face justice”.

In conveying the condolences and the full depth and range of the nation’s shock and trauma to the families of the victims, the Ohaji Egbema community and the government and people of Imo State, the President urged community leaders, the police and the secret service to never again allow the occurrence of the heart-breaking incident in any part of the country.

Writing by Abdullah Bello; Editing by Abdullahi Lamino and Tony Okerafor