On Monday, December 4, 2023, tragedy struck the Tudun Biri community in the Igabi Local Government Area of Kaduna State. An accidental drone airstrike triggered an explosion that claimed the lives of innocent children and women joyously celebrating the Maulud anniversary.
The incident sent shockwaves across social media platforms, particularly on the X platform, where users expressed their grief and frustration. @ArewaTwiter pointed out that “similar incidents had occurred in Maiduguri, Nasarawa, Benue, Katsina, and Kaduna,” questioning whether such occurrences were exclusive to the northern region. The ex-vice president of Nigeria, Atiku Abubakar, took to his X page, expressing his sorrow and calling for a comprehensive investigation into the incident.
“I am grieved by the news of the drone airstrike that killed dozens of people and left scores of others with various degrees of injury,” wrote Atiku Abubakar. He highlighted the alarming trend of miscalculated air strikes in the country and urged the authorities to develop counterinsurgency strategies to protect civilians from such tragic incidents.
In the aftermath of the tragedy, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lieutenant General Taoreed Lagbaja, visited the Tudun Biri community to express condolences. Accompanied by principal staff officers, he met with community leaders and conveyed regret for the incident, attributing it to the misinterpretation of activities during aerial patrols.
The COAS publicly apologised on behalf of the Nigerian Army and initiated an inquiry into the incident. He pledged to address deficiencies in both human and artificial intelligence variables to prevent such occurrences in the future. The District Head acknowledged the Army’s integrity in accepting responsibility and urged support for the victims.
General Lagbaja also extended condolences to religious leaders and visited hospitalised victims, ensuring immediate provisions for their well-being. He affirmed the Army’s commitment to investigating the tragic incident thoroughly and preventing its recurrence.