Kaduna State government has declared 16 bags and other items unclaimed by victims of the Abuja-Kaduna bound train which was attacked by terrorists exactly a year ago.

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Also unclaimed, according to the government are assorted loose belongings including prayer mats, books and clothing items, belonging to the victims.

The State Commissioner of internal security and home affairs, Samuel Aruwan, said the State government will continue to maintain detailed records of all items collected, including the contact details of victims or their representatives.

“Exactly one year ago, on the 28th of March 2022, a horrendous attack was launched by terrorists on the Kaduna-bound train from Abuja. The terrorists derailed the train at around 7 pm by setting off an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) to blow up a section of the track. They then opened fire on the coaches and kidnapped scores of passengers from the train.

“In the heat of the confusion, a terrified passenger finally alerted the Ministry of Internal Security and Home Affairs on the exact location of the train, which was traced to Kasarami-Audujongom general area of Chikun LGA.

Good “Immediately, Major General KI Mukhtar, the then GOC 1 Division and Brigadier General UT Upuene, then Garrison Commander moved with their brave troops to secure the train and rescue the remaining passengers.

“Subsequent developments confirmed that nine passengers were killed in the attack, with over 60 kidnapped and more than 20 injured.

“Passengers injured were successfully evacuated by the troops, staff of Kaduna State Emergency Management Agency and other humanitarian volunteers, along with the remains of the slain passengers.

“After the search and rescue, troops carefully secured passengers’ luggage and thereafter handed them over to the Kaduna State Government on 31st March 2022.

“Also supplied was a detailed inventory of over 100 items of luggage and several loose belongings carefully labelled. Records confirmed that nine victims had already collected their belongings directly from the 1 Division Headquarters.

“Consequently, the Kaduna State Government can now report that between 3rd April and 17th November 2022, 62 persons (victims of the attack or their relatives) came forward to claim 94 items of luggage containing a range of personal items. Other loose belongings identified and retrieved from the Kaduna State Government by their owners include certificates, documents, passports, car and house keys, cash, ATM cards, mobile phones, tablets, laptops and accessories, books, perfumes, as well as clothing and jewellery items.

“As of the time of this update, 16 bags remain unclaimed, along with an assortment of loose belongings including prayer mats, books and clothing items.

“The Kaduna State Government will continue to maintain detailed records of all items collected, including the contact details of victims or their representatives.

“One year on, the Kaduna State Government again offers its heartfelt commiserations to all victims of the tragedy, and their families. The efforts of all security agencies in responding to the attack to secure the lives of many passengers are recognised and deeply appreciated.
“The window is still open for the collection of the remaining items at the Ministry.

“The Government appreciates the 1 Division, Nigerian Army for the brave efforts of its officers and men, and diligent collaboration with the Kaduna State Government following the attack. The Government similarly appreciates the 453 Base Services Group (Nigerian Air Force), the Department of State Services, the Kaduna State Police Command, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, and the Kaduna State Vigilance Service. Gratitude also goes to the Borno State Government for valuable collaboration towards solutions to common problems.”