No fewer than 109 persons have been burnt to death after fire gutted an illegal oil refinery site at Abacheke Kpofire in Egbema community, Ohaji/Egbema LGA of Imo State.
It was gathered that the incident which occured on Friday Night claimed scores of lives, while others were seriously injured.
The Head of Operations of the National Emergency Management Agency, Mr. Ifeanyi Nnaji, while confirming the incident, said only 20 persons died during the inferno.
But in an update on Saturday, Nnaji said so far 109 bodies had been recovered while others were still missing.
He said,” It was more serious than we envisaged. As of this evening, we have counted 109 bodies on the ground while countless others fell into the river and others died inside the refinery.”
The Imo State Commissioner for Petroleum Resources, Goodluck Opiah, revealed that the operator of the illegal refinery identified as Okenze Onyenwoke, is currently at large.
It was also gathered that about six vehicles were burnt during the incident.