President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the nation’s armed forces, security and intelligence agencies to intensify the clampdown on illegal refineries following the reported deaths of tens of people Friday night after an illegal refinery exploded at Abaezi forest in the Ohaji-Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State.

Reacting to what he described as a “catastrophe and a national disaster,” President Buhari said responsibility for the loss of lives and property must squarely lie with the sponsors of the illegal refinery, “who must all be caught and made to face justice.”

In conveying “the condolences and the full depth and range of the nation’s shock and trauma” to the families of the victims, the Ohaji Egbema community and the government and people of Imo State, the President urged community leaders, the police, and the secret service to never allow the occurrence of the heart-breaking incident in any part of the country again.

Garba Shehu
Senior Special Assistant to the President
(Media & Publicity)
April 24, 2022