A kerosene explosion in the early hours of Sunday killed an 8-year-old girl, Zicora Igbohonoja in Sapele, Delta state when the victim’s family friend identifed as Oghenero Ejiro lit a stove to assist the family in cooking.
It was gathered that the Zicora, a primary 2 pupil of a private school in Sapele, was playing with the the young lady who was in their house for a visit and was assigned to prepare meal for the family.
Speaking to DAILY POST, Ejiro, in profuse tears, said, “the victim and her parents are residents of Oghene road in Sapele, and I stay opposite their street. I have been a friend to the family, particularly the mother of the victim, I went to the house, and found the woman lying down that she was sick, she begged me to help them prepare meal for the family, and lit the stove, the kerosene suddenly exploded, and the little girl, Zicora by me was consumed with her clothes”.
The deceased was said to have screamed for help which attracted neighbours, unfortunately, Zicora was already in a ball of the fire spreading wild. The fire consumed virtually all the property in the kitchen.
Zicora was said to have been rushed to a nearby clinic where, Dr Richard Agbani, medical director of the clinic confirmed she was dead with the fire explosion consuming her heart.
Investigation revealed that there has been in the past six months strong indications that adulterated kerosene had been on sale in Sapele, and its environments, a situation a resident, Joy Mofe alleged had killed no fewer than five persons via explosions.
But the police spokesman in the state, DSP Andrew Aniamaka, who spoke to DAILY POST said, “We have arrested four suspects who had been involved the sale of suspected adulterated kerosene, they have been charged to court, it is the same Adulterated kerosene that exploded, and killed the small girl, Zicora, we are investigating the incident.”
It was gathered that Zicora had before her sudden death, told her mother that some persons were always pursuing her in the dream to kill her, but her mother treated her complaints with a pinch of salt.
Speaking to DAILY POST, Zicora’s mother, Mrs. Patience Igbohonoja said “I bought four cans of kerosene but the product had a kind of foul odour, and too colourful for my liking. See, it has killed my daughter now”
Investigations revealed that residents of the building and the adjacent one which consists of 13 rooms could not evacuate their property due to the intensity of the fire, even as several attempts were made by sympathizers to put out the fire, to no avail
As at the time of this report, tension was still high in Sapele community following the incident, but a resident who spoke DAILY POST on condition of anonymity said “we want the police to investigate the kerosene, and bring perpetrators of the evil to book”.