Nigeria Buries Dead from Pipeline Explosion

Workers bury another charred corpse. Credit: Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, NPR. i i

Workers bury another charred corpse. The unidentified man was found floating on the water, trapped in a mangrove swamp on the other side of the lagoon from the fuel pipeline blast. Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, NPR
Workers bury another charred corpse. Credit: Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, NPR.

Workers bury another charred corpse. The unidentified man was found floating on the water, trapped in a mangrove swamp on the other side of the lagoon from the fuel pipeline blast.

Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, NPR

Nigerians are burying the dead killed in Friday's explosion of an oil pipeline. About 200 people died in the blast. The deadly fireball apparently occurred when people tried to tap the line for fuel.

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RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

JOHN YDSTIE, host:

And I'm John Ydstie.

The last of 200 victims of Friday's gas pipeline explosion in Nigeria are being buried today.

NPR's Ofeibea Quist-Arcton reports from Lagos.

OFEIBEA QUIST-ARCTON reporting:

Nigerians are saying déjà vu in a blasé though not unsympathetic acceptance of the latest fuel pipeline blast that left so many people dead; some scorched beyond recognition.

Nigerians have seen it all before. Indeed, it's a recurring nightmare in Africa's leading oil exporting nation. This time, the explosion happened here in Nigeria's crumbling economic capital, Lagos, near the lagoon side island of Ilado.

The people who live here are dirt poor. But Ilado residents deny that any of them were among those who were reportedly lined up in the dead of night with jerry cans to scoop up fuel illegally gushing out of a punctured gasoline pipeline. It's thought that many jobless individuals looking for a way to earn a quick buck decided that selling fuel on the black market might do the trick.

No one lived to tell the tale. Just bodies were evidence of what happened.

Ofeibea Quist-Arcton, NPR News, Lagos.

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