By Taye Obateru, Jos
Fifteen children aged between 12 and 16 years were yesterday crushed to death in Barkin-Ladi, Plateau State, by a commercial vehicle conveying maize to a nearby market. Nine others were injured and have been hospitalized.
The children who were said to be members of the Boys and Girls Brigade of about three churches in the local government headquarters were on an early morning keep-fit exercise when the incident occurred.
It was gathered that the youths from three churches usually gather for the exercise by jogging to and from nearby villages but it was an unlucky day as a vehicle carrying maize from Bokkos lost control and ran into the children numbering about 40 killing the 15 instantly. An eye witness told Sunday Vanguard that parents whose children were in the team rushed to the scene to ascertain the well-being of their children. This created its own commotion. The bodies of the deceased and the injured were later taken to a nearby health centre where the injured were given first aid treatment before they were transferred to the Plateau Specialist Hospital in Jos.
Police Public Relations Officer in the state, DSP, Felicia Anslem confirmed the incident, adding that investigations had commenced and efforts were on to track down the fleeing driver of the vehicle.