The Lagos State government has announced an important update following the tragedy that killed many students at the Bab Fafunwa Millennium School, Ojodu, formerly Ojodu Grammar School.
The government on Wednesday suspended the ongoing first term examination until January 2022 at the school. Recall that pupils of the school took to the streets to protest the death of their mates.
An articulated truck crushed many of the pupils on their way home from school on Tuesday.
President Muhammadu Buhari has commiserated with the families of those affected.
A statement by presidential spokesman Femi Adesina reads in part: “President Buhari condoles with government and people of Lagos State and the authorities of Ojodu Grammar School over the sad and painful loss of the promising lives that were cut short in the tragic incident.
“He prays that the Almighty God will comfort the grieving parents and relations at this very difficult time, and grant the injured quick recovery.”
The exact number of those who died remains conflicting, but sources at the school said three pupils died.
The accident occurred at the Grammar School Bus Stop, Ogunnusi Road, along Ogba-Ojodu/Berger axis.
The truck driver was said to have been trying to evade arrest by Vehicle Inspection Officers (VIO) and men of the Lagos State Transport Management Agency (LASTMA) from Berger Division, Ikeja when he rammed into the pupils by the roadside.
Parents and guardians on Wednesday stormed the school in protest.
They demanded to take their children and wards home.
Some said the school should not have opened Wednesday.
A pupil who spoke to The Nation noted that they were in school to write their examinations before their parents came for them.
Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Folashade Adefisayo, addressed them.
She noted that the safety of the pupils was paramount.
The commissioner called for calm, saying that the school would close until January 4.
“The school closes for now. They had started their exams but they will continue when they resume January 4, 2022,” she said.
The enraged pupils, when eventually allowed to go home, took to the streets in protest.
One of them who identified herself as Faith raised a placard with the inscription ‘RIP to my mates’.
She demanded that the state government ban articulated vehicles, FRSC and LASTMA.
She said: “We don’t want LASTMA or FRSC or whatever. We don’t want trailers on our roads anymore. We are not chickens. Look at how they wasted our colleagues. We no go gree.”
They called for justice and compensation for their slain colleagues.
They marched along Ogunnusi Road, almost disrupting the flow of traffic.
Chairman of Ojodu Local Council Development Area, David Odunmbaku, said he had visited the hospitals, adding that the injured pupils were responding to treatment.
“I went around the hospitals this morning. The injured pupils are fine; they are responding to treatment. And so far, no death has been recorded apart from the ones from Tuesday,” he said.
Adefisayo, Odunmbaku and the lawmaker representing Ikeja Constituency II, Adedamola Richard Kasunmu met with the school officials and some parents.