Explosion at illegal oil refinery in Nigeria kills over 100 people
Officials say the victims were 'burnt beyond recognition'
More than 100 people are thought to have been killed following an oil refinery explosion in Nigeria overnight.
At least 100 deaths have been reported so far following the blast at an illegal oil refining depot in Nigeria’s Rivers state on Friday night.
The incident was confirmed by a local government official and the NGO Youths and Environmental Advocacy Centre on Saturday, April 23.
State commissioner for petroleum resources, Goodluck Opiah, said that "The fire outbreak occurred at an illegal bunkering site and it affected over 100 people who were burnt beyond recognition”.
According to Reuters, unemployment and poverty rates in the Niger Delta have made illegal crude refining an attractive business but with deadly consequences, with many people tapping into crude oil pipelines owned by major fuel companies and stored in makeshift tanks.
However, the hazardous and highly dangerous process has led to many fatal accidents and has polluted the already blighted surrounding land.
While the cause of the explosion is yet to be ascertained, it comes just a few days after ISIS claimed responsibility for a bomb which resulted in at least 30 casualties in Taraba State on Tuesday, and not long after another blast in the rural town of Nukkai, Jalingo on Friday - killing three and injuring 11. Some of those affected are said to have been children.
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