Twin suicide bombers suspected to be Boko Haram attacked a mosque in Gwoza, Borno State, yesterday, killing a 12-year-old child and leaving many injured.
reports said the suicide bombers forced their way into the mosque while prayer was in progress and before anyone could raise the alarm, the attackers had already entered into the mosque.
The incident happened at Guduf Nagadiyo, in Bulabaulin, Gwoza. Soon after, soldiers from 192 Battalion, Nigerian Army, cordoned off the mosque.
A resident said the suicide bombers might have infiltrated the town during a wedding that held at the palace of the Emir of Gwoza on Saturday.
Borno has been the worst hit in the resurgence of Boko Haram attacks in the North-East. Many villages along the Damaturu-Maiduguri road in the state have come under attack recently by Boko Haram terrorists.
However, the army said its troops of Operation Lafiya Dole had thwarted efforts by the insurgents to attack soft targets in Borno.
Army spokesman, Col. Aminu Iliyasu, in a statement yesterday, said troops had continued to decimate the insurgent in different encounters across the North-East.
Iliyasu reiterated the army’s resolve to sustain the efforts of the military until all remnants of Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province were completely wiped out.
He disclosed that troops of 3 Battalion, deployed in Gamborou-Ngala Local Government Area of Borno State, on January 18, repelled a Boko Haram attack on Ngala community.
According to him, the insurgents sneaked into the community in five gun trucks, motorcycles and with a number of foot soldiers through the rear of a humanitarian hub.
“They used a farm as cover with the heinous intent to unleash one of the most devastating terror attacks in recent times. Fortunately for the residents, the vigilant troops responded swiftly, engaging the criminals with overwhelming superior firepower, thereby, forcing them to beat a hasty retreat in complete disarray.
“During the ensuing pursuit and exploitation embarked upon by the troops, one Boko Haram criminal suicide truck driver strapped with a suicide vest was neutralised. Items captured during the encounter include one AK47 rifle, one FN rifle, one motorcycle and one heavily laden vehicle borne improvised explosive device with deadly explosive materials,” he said.
Iliyasu added that preliminary investigations revealed that vehicles laden with IEDs and suicide bombers were heading to the IDP camp in Gamborou-Ngala before the troops foiled the attack.
He added that troops rescued five aid workers who took refuge in a bunker during the attack.
According to him, on January 24, 3 Battalion’s troops stationed at Ngala bridge repelled another Boko Haram attack. The insurgents suffered heavy casualties on their men and equipment. Two anti-aircraft guns, one GPMG, two AK47 rifles, one GPMG barrel, 688 rounds of 7.62mm NATO ammunition, 20 rounds of PKT ammunition and 63 rounds of 50 ammunition were also captured.
“One neutralised body of the criminal insurgents was recovered during exploitation, while several other bodies and those wounded were believed to be carted away as evident by the trails of blood found along their withdrawal route.
“Similarly, on January 24, troops of 7 Division decisively cleared a Boko Haram ambush while on clearance operations between Firgi and Banki Junction in Bama Local Government Area of Borno. In the aftermath of the encounter, two Boko Haram criminals were neutralised, while others are believed to have escaped with varying degrees of gunshot wounds. The Chief of Army Staff, Lt-Gen. Tukur Buratai, wishes to reassure the public of the army’s unwavering commitment to ensuring adequate security and enabling environment for a peaceful and prosperous nation,” he said.