Residents flee Kaduna community as tremors persist
Incident not unusual, low data hindering analysis, say experts
Residents of Koi community in Jaba Local Government Area of Kaduna State have begun fleeing their homes, as Sunday’s tremors continued into the early hours of yesterday.
The frightened citizens had kept vigil, and at dawn staged a protest, calling on government to immediately come to their aid.
The District Head of Fada (in charge of Koi Central), Dr. Stephen Sani, particularly appealed to the Kaduna State Government to commence a swift investigation into the occurrence.
The upset below the earth crust is, however, not unusual, said Acting Head of the Department of Geology, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Dr. Obiora Chika Smart.
Another geologist and former Director General, Nigerian Geological Survey Agency (NGSA), Prof. Siyan Malomo, regretted that data on tremors were low in Nigeria and that they were usually sourced from the United States.
“Fundamentally, there is a gap in data collection. It is a gap the Geological Survey Agency Nigeria should meet,” he said.
A source in Koi told The Guardian that the family members of the district head had since left the community. He said: “They were staying in a multi-storied building. But with the tremors, there is the fear the building could collapse.”
According to one Suleiman Yakubu: “It happened about five times during the night, causing people to run for safety in the morning. It was between 1:00 a.m. and 4:00 a.m. A lot of people were forced to stay awake. Youths later took to the streets. They went to the palace of the chief, Dr. Dalandi Mande, in protest. But the police and vigilance group mobilised, and they were dispersed.”
One Anthony, a trader and non-native, said: “We have never experienced this before. We want to go back to our places, so that when things settle we could come back.”
Some persons in Koi community, however, attributed the seismic event to a recent cutting down of sacred trees by officials of the local electricity distribution company and consequent refusal by the gods to be appeased.
Nigeria, in June this year, reported tremors in parts of Oyo, Bayelsa and Rivers States. Until 2016, the country experienced tremors in 1933, 1939, 1964, 1984, 1990, 1994, 1997, 2000 and 2009.