- Authorities Caught Napping As Sect Unleashes Terror, Kills 278 In Borno
- Sect’s Resurgence Embarrassing To Buhari’s Govt- Shehu
- We Are On Top Of The Situation, Boko Haram Weakened – Military
The Nigerian Military seems to have underestimated the residual strength of the dreaded Boko Haram sect, and may have been in a rush in announcing its achievements, as recent events indicate that, Boko Haram is not only still lethal, but has the capacity to Cause further mischief, as the sect fights back even in the face of obvious defeat.
nationalTRAIl reports that, barely a week after the military authorities took stock of its various conquests over Boko Haram, in which they attempted to convince Nigerians that the nine years old war is almost over, the insurgents struck in several places, as if announcing their seeming omnipresence.
In the last one week, the sect has been unleashing havoc on Borno and Adamawa states, with the latest sack of Dalori and other satellite towns, including chibok, Wanori, Ngomari and some settlements around the University of Maiduguri, pn Borno State, as well as Gombi, in Adamawa State, in which not less than 278 people have been reported to have perished.
There was general panic in Maiduguri last Saturday when news filtered in that the insurgents were mobilizing to overrun the city, even as people fled the campus out of fear that the university may the next target of attack given its proximity to the areas already being attacked.
Our correspondent further reports that, even with assurances from the Military, that the situation was under control and that the insurgents could not proceed beyond the five areas, fears were still palpable on the faces of Maiduguri residents, most of whom spent the night keeping vigil around their areas.
In a seeming defeatist tone, occasioned by the renewed activities of the Boko Haram sect in the North east generally, which he promised to wipe out in three months of his administration, President Muhammadu Buhari admitted that his government has been embarrassed by its inability to curb the insurgency eight months after taking over the mantle of leadership of the country.
Buhari who spoke against the backdrop of plethora of suicide bombings in Chibok market, Dolari Internally Displaced Person’s (IDP) camp and other locations in Borno State and the Gombi market bombing in Adamawa State recently, said that the insurgents had become more desperate explaining that the recent bombings were attempts to gain public
Boko Haram Fights Back In Defeat sympathy and attention having suffered terribly in the hands of Nigerian military.
However, despite these renewed killings, Buhari insists that the terrorists had been rendered weak, confused and homeless after repeated bombings and ravaging of their camps and hide outs by the military, forcing them to find their way back into the society to wreak havoc, like the case of the Dolari IDP’s camp.
According to the President, the materials for the Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) were locally sourced by the insurgents just as he urged Nigerians especially residents of the north-east region to be more vigilant and circumspect.
“Having lost the war, they are seeking ways and means to gradually find their way back into society. They are not returning to contribute but to cause more havoc. They are so desperate to embarrass the government and the people that they have no qualms attacking isolated communities and markets.
“I urge all citizens wherever they live to own the war against terror and to be part of the fight because it is the only way we can finish the remaining work that needs to be done to make our country safe again,” worried Buhari said.
According to a statement by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu President Buhari “extended his condolences to all the people of Chibok, Gombi and Dolari who lost loved ones in the recent attacks and prayed that the Almighty God will comfort them and grant the injured persons quick recovery.”
Meanwhile , residents Dalori Village who came to claim their corpses at the State Specialist hospital in Maiduguri, the Borno state capital revealed how their village was attacked by the dreaded Islamic Sect on Saturday evening killing scores of people, before setting their houses on fire. According to them, the militants arrived the area at exactly 6:10 pm, just when people were preparing to say the maghrib prayers, and started shooting sporadically as they advanced.
A nurse at the State Specialist hospital confirmed that their facilities are being overstretched as the casualty figure has continued to rise with more corpses being recovered from the bush around the village, even as survivors have been trooping into Maiduguri to seek refuge and to identify their relations, whose corpses may have been brought to the hospital.
Umar Kachallah, a relation to one of the victims told Our Correspondent at the hospital on Sunday that, the insurgents killed some soldiers and members of the Civilian JTF at a road block close to their village before them moving into Dalori, stressing that the exact casualty figure may never be known as nobody can go to the area now.
Narrating how it happened, Kachallah said, “We all ran into our houses, mother came and started burning the house, if you come out they would shoot you but the fire would also burn you if you stay inside, so most of us dash out running. We escape but many of us were killed in the process. There was no security or military that came to our rescue because they were attacked first and did not get additional people until the Boko Haram left.”
He said, pointing to the corpses at the State Specialists hospital, “this is my brother Mallum Goni Kachallah, this is his wife Hussaina. They killed them. Come this is my wife and our child” He Sobs, “We did not do anything to this people, and they came and burnt my family and kill everybody”
Our correspondent also reports that people have lost count of the corpses being brought in from the scenes of the attack, with many of them taken to other health centres for lack of space at the state specialist hospital.
When Our Correspondent started taking photographs, of the Corpses hospital officials at the Morgue stopped him and asked him to go and obtain permission from the military who were stationed at the hospital gate and asked the hospital not to allow press access to photograph the corpses.
Speaking to one of the Soldiers at the hospital gate, he told Our Correspondent that, “We can only allow you to see but no pictures, that is the order given to us and you would not want us violating the orders for your sake. Keep your iPad in the car and go and see the corpses” the soldier said politely.
By then he had already two pictures, which he was allowed to go with a promise not to expose further. Getting back to the morgue our correspondent noticed that more people had arrived and were inspecting the corpses for possible identification and recovery of their own relations.
Ma’aji Bukar, one of the relations of three victims of the attack told Our Correspondent that the insurgents came with Six Toyota Hilux Vehicles and more than 25 motorcycles, moving from village to village, including, Wanori, Ngomari Karikari, Kofa and Dalori, killing randomly.
About 30 of the victims were killed in a Mosque at Ngomari Karikari, as they got set for the mahgrib prayers, over 50 killed at Kofa and over 50 also at Wanori villages. Some of the attacks were suicide bombers while that of Dalori is mostly gunshots as well as those killed in the flames. Our people at Kofa village told us that it was the Soldiers that prevented them from running away during the attack, he said.
A statement from the Operation Lafiya Dole confirmed the attacks, saying, “in their desperate efforts for reprisal attacks on strong, determined and committed members of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) and innocent citizen, yesterday 30 January 2016 BHT insurgent launched attacked Dalori through Yale from (rear of Dalori village)”.
The Military said the insurgents, according to an eye witnessed came in two Golf cars, motorcycles, and not Toyota Hilux vehicles as narrated by the villagers, and started opening fire and burning houses; their motive was to cause rancour and penetrate crowd with suicide bombers. This much was the case when people were running for their dear lives to Gomari Kerkeri village three female suicide bombers attempted to make their way into the crowd but were intercepted and subsequently got blown up.
“During the incident lives were lost while some people sustained injuries. The insurgents also attempted to penetrate Dalori IDP camp, but the attempt was resisted by the troop which resulted into detonation of IED by the suicide bombers”, the Military explained.
Theater commander Operation Lafiya Dole Major General Hassan Umaru had since paid condolence visit to the District Head of Dalori Alh Lawal Bashir and entire dwellers for the unfortunate incident, he was said to have obtained first hand details of the attack.
He assured the people of Theatre’s commitment in bring insurgency to an end soon, even as he commended the villagers for their resilience and urged them to be strong and committed in the fight against insurgency.
Earlier in Buma village, along the Maiduguri Damaturu road, at least four members of Civilian Joint Task Force and another Volunteer civilian were killed along while four others sustained injuries when a Toyota Hilux patrol vehicle rammed into landmines/ Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) suspected to have been planted by members of dreaded Boko Haram terrorists.
Buma village is 15 kilometres drive from troubled Ngamdu District of Kaga Local Government Area of Borno state. Benishiek headquarters of Kaga which is south west and about 85 kilometres drive from Maiduguri, the state capital, has remained a black spot for Boko Haram attacks in recent times.
Our Correspondent gathered from reliable source that the occupants of the ill fated vehicle were on patrol before stepping on the planted IEDs which exploded living 5 members of the Civilian JTF including a Volunteer dead, while four of the injured ones were rushed to the hospital for treatment.
Our correspondent who passed the route reports that, already, the dead victims have been buried according to Islamic rite, while two of those who sustained severe injuries have been rushed to University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital, having lost too much blood.
All effort to get confirmation from the Police Public Relations Officer of the Borno state Command, Mr. Victor Isuku proved abortive as his phone lines were not accessible at press time.