30 more killed as Boko Haram heightens suicide attacks in Nigeria
A Boko Haram attack has killed about 30 people in an incident in which three suicide bombers detonated bombs at Internally Displaced People’s (IDP) camp and a market in Mandarari, about 25 kilometres from Maiduguri, the Borno state capital.
Over 80 people sustained various degrees of injuries. Baba Kura, a member of the Civilian Joint Task Force, said “The first assailant blew herself up, triggering panic.” He explained that “People were trying to close their shops when two other female bombers triggered their explosives, causing most of the casualties.”
This attack comes a few days after the Nigerian army and Air force insisted that the Islamic terrorist group has been ‘defeated’ and ‘degraded’.
Theatre Commander, Operation Lafiya Dole, Major Genereal Ibrahim Attahiru, on Monday, inaugurated another special strike force against the insurgency.
“The Mobile Strike Force, (MST), is launched to deny the insurgents freedom of action and finally decimate them,” said Attahiru. “This specially selected force, with mixed equipment and platforms, were deployed to achieve the conduct of long range patrols and ambush deep into the hinterlands. All these are in an effort to ensure the success of Operation Lafiya Dole and enhance our operational efficiency.”
In a video released by the terrorist group earlier this week, Abubakar Shekau, speaking mostly in Arabic and the local Kanuri language, taunted the Nigerian military, insisting that the terror group is still strong and in charge of its territory in the Sambisa forest in Borno State.
Recent upsurge of attacks by the Islamist jihadists, in the last three weeks, has killed over 70 people including university of Maiduguri lecturers and police officers and staff of the Nigerian Petroleum corporation on an oil field inspection in the Sambissa forest.
Monday night, the Islamists attacked Nyibango and Muduhu, both in Madagali Local Government Area of Adamawa State and burnt down over 60 houses. Chairman of Madagali Local Government Area, Yusuf Muhammed, said the attack lasted for nearly two hours. “They looted foodstuff, killed livestock and burnt the villages completely, including churches and the residence of one councillor, John Hammajam.”
Residents of Madagali, an area with a high number of Christian communities, threatened to go back to Yola, the Adamawa state capital where their lives will be more secured. Many complained that the army said it had defeated Boko Haram and were told to go back to their communities but the Islamic terror group is still attacking communities in the region.
Hassan John is West Africa Editor, GCN and a priest of the Anglican Diocese of Jos.