ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — Rail service in Nigeria’s capital city resumed on Monday, eight months after assailants attacked a train with explosives and gunfire, killing seven people and abducting dozens of passengers.
Only a handful of passengers and armed security personnel were aboard the first trip from Abuja to neighboring Kaduna state.
“We are not scared because of the security measures they took,” said passenger Jafaar Sanusi. “There were many security forces in the train for protection.”
Authorities have blamed the brazen attack in March on the armed groups who have been kidnapping people for ransom in northwestern Nigeria.
Paschal Nnorli, general manager of the Abuja-Kaduna train service, said that officials had succeeded in getting the release of the abducted passengers and had stepped up security on the route.
“Insecurity is getting higher and higher on a daily basis in Nigeria, it is not peculiar to rail operations but we shall continue to do our best,” he said.
The train service is a key means of transport for many in Nigeria’s capital, a city of 3.6 million, because the major road to the city suffers frequent kidnappings and not many can afford air travel.