HELICOPTER CRASH— Damaged part of the crashed helicopter which claimed lives of DIG Haruna John and three others yesterday in Jos. Photos: Taye Obateru
A Nigerian army helicopter crashed around midday on Wednesday near Jos, in the Plateau State in Nigeria’s Middle Belt. According to eyewitnesses the chopper was out of control and crashed against a house, injuring a little girl. A spokesman for local police forces stated that four persons aboard died upon impact, including a top police official; the reasons for the accident are still unknown. The helicopter was on surveillance duty over the area after the city saw yet another attack against a Christian church on Sunday, in which 11 people died and 10 more perished in the ensuing violence between the army and Christian youths seeking vengeance against the Muslim community they deemed culpable. Residents of Jos affirmed that the situation is still extremely tense: on Tuesday local university students took to the streets to protest the stabbing of two fellow students. The march soon turned violent with protesters lighting tires on fire and raising barricades. Jos has turned into a ghost town since Sunday, with deserted streets and closed schools, shops, banks and markets. Police are trying to mend the situation by taking measures, beyond the usual check-points, that might provide real safety for the first time; namely no vehicular traffic or parking on Fridays and Sundays near places of worship. . .