A marriage ceremony in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State ended in disarray on Saturday after a 15-year-old guest was hit by a stray bullet.
The incident followed an accidental discharge by an official of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) drafted to provide security at the event.
The victim, Veronica Kufre, is receiving treatment at the intensive care unit of a private clinic in the capital of the oil-rich state after three hospitals had refused to admit her.
It was gathered that the incident occurred at Nsukara community, near the University of Uyo main campus during the rush for drinks and food at the ceremony.
“Trouble started when the two security officers had joined other guests to help themselves with food. Unfortunately, the firearm was still in his hands when the sudden discharge occurred and sent the couple and other guests scampering for safety,” an anonymous source told Channels Television on Sunday.
“But one of them was quick to redirect the nozzle of the gun to the ground and pumped the rest of the bullets in. However, the fragments had already hit the victim who was close to the security official.
“At first, we thought it was the usual gunshots that security officials would fire during burial, wedding, and other ceremonies to keep the place lively. But when the young girl collapsed to the ground with blood spill, we discovered the devil was at work to kill our joy,” he added.
Meanwhile, an NSCDC spokesman in the state, Ukeme Umanah told said the information regarding the incident was still sketchy.
He, however, said that the State Commandant of the Corps, Abidemi Majekondunmi, had immediately activated the system structures to verify what happened, noting that the victim is in a very stable condition.
He assured that the NSCDC will release an official statement on the issue as soon as the investigation is completed.