“An Islamic cleric alongside his wife and three children were burnt to death when the insurgents sacked their home at Bularin IDPs camp.”
Timothy Olanrewaju, Maiduguri and Molly Kilete, Abuja (with agency report)
Boko Haram killed an Islamic cleric, wife, three children, eight others and sacked two villages overnight in the restive town of Konduga in Borno State. Acting General Officer Commanding 7 Division of the Nigerian Army, Brig. Gen. Bulama Biu, confirmed the attack yesterday in Maiduguri, the state capital.
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Biu said, however, that troops rose to the occasion and repelled the invaders, who had repeatedly attacked communities in the Konduga Local Government Area over the years. He disclosed that he had visited the scenes of the attack at Bularin and Kofa, including camps in the communities, housing thousands of displaced people.
“I was there. We recovered one dead body and saw burnt houses. Troops have been following up on the attackers,” said Biu.
Alfred Audu, a member of a militia known as Civilian Joint Task Force, who claimed to be on duty at the time
of the attack, said the insurgents engaged troops in a bid to force their way into the communities. He said the insurgents were pushed back when fighter planes were deployed to confront the invaders.
Another witness, who gave his name as Alhaji Modu, said that hundreds of the insurgents on trucks with mounted guns and motorcycles attacked the communities at about 7:45pm. He said the insurgents launched rocket attacks and forced their way into the IDPs camps and also attacked homes with ferocious fire.
Modu said that nine people were killed at Bularin IDPs camp and three others in the Kofa IDPs camp. “An Islamic cleric alongside his wife and three children were burnt to death when the insurgents sacked their home at Bularin IDPs camp. They burnt down the village market, shops, houses, animals and vehicles. Many people died in the attack while others are still missing.
“Bularin village was razed and several tents in the camp destroyed. Many people were displaced in the attack,” Modu said.
However, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said that Boko Haram attacked Kofa village and killed six persons. It said the insurgents cashed in on the confusion created by the attack to penetrate Dal- ori Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camp where they also shot dead two IDPs.
“Six people from Kofa village were killed as a result of suspected Boko Haram terrorists that attacked four villages in the outskirts of Maiduguri, the Borno State capital,” NEMA northeast coordinator, Bashir Garga, disclosed in a statement.
He said the attack occurred on Wednesday night at about 8pm at Mallumti, Ngomari, Gozari villages and Kofa, all located near Dalori IDPs camp at the outskirts of Maiduguri city.
“Many villagers fled to the Dalori IDPs camp for safety which led to an attack on the camp vicinity which claimed the lives of two IDPs, making a total of eight people dead,” he stated.
He said the insurgents came in four vehicles and some motorcycles, ransacked the local market in front of the
IDPs camp before fleeing into different directions.
“Villagers who ran into the bush for safety have returned to their homes while the Borno State Fire Service has contained the inferno. The injured persons have been treated in the camp clinic while serious cases were evacuated to hospitals in Maiduguri. An assessment team is on site to provide relief assistance to those affected,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Army said its soldiers on counter insurgency operations in the north east have foiled another attempt by terrorists to blow up one of the largest Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps located in Dalori, Borno State.
The information contained in the Twitter handle on the Nigerian Army, said: “Troops of 251 Task Force Battalion successfully foiled a BHT attempted attack on Kofa village and Dalori IDPs camp in Maiduguri on October 31 at about 10pm.
“The terrorists gained access through a bush part behind the village in four vehicles and some motorcycles. They ransacked the market in front of the IDPs camp.
“On sighting Nigerian Army troops that were mobilized to the area, they set some houses and the market ablaze and fled along Maiduguri-Bama Road. However, one civilian was found dead.
“Troops are presently assisting the villagers who ran into the bush back to their homes while the Borno State Fire Service have contained the inferno.”