At least 20 people were reportedly killed yesterday, in an attack carried out by suspected Boko Haram insurgents in Kamuyya village, Biu local government area of Borno state.
Our correspondent reported that Boko Haram militants have recently intensified bloody attacks in the rural areas, as over 100 villagers have reportedly lost their lives within the last one week.
The latest incident occurred in the afternoon, when dozens of the insurgents, armed with assault rifles and explosives invaded a weekly market in Kamuyya village, killing 20 persons.
Residents said the insurgents had visited the town about two months ago and asked the village head to mobilise his subjects to contribute the sum of N250, 000 for them in order to execute God’s work.
The villagers, most of them peasant farmers and petty traders had only managed to raise N70, 000, a situation which angered the insurgents.
They reportedly threatened to return and collect the balance, warning the community to either heed to their demand within a stipulated period or face a deadly attack.
“Actually, when they issued such threat, we all took it lightly and nobody bothered to make any extra effort to put in the amount they requested. Maybe that was what ignited this bloody attack, because we were unable to meet their demand”, a resident, Bukar Umar alleged.
Umar said the incident occurred when over 20 insurgents, suspected to have emerged from bush stormed the Kamuyya weekly market when traders were conducting their businesses and opened fire into the crowd before setting shops and vehicles on fire.
According to him, the militants, armed with sophisticated weapons, raided the area and proceeded to the major market and begun sporadic shootings into the direction of crowd, killing 20 people on the spot and burnt most of the shops in the market.
He noted that they were taken unawares, as the town has not come under such heavy attacks for a long time.
He expressed dismay that innocent people were killed freely without the intervention of the security forces. “Throughout the onslaught, which lasted for over five hours, there was no single security personnel to confront the invaders, as they had a field day wreaking havoc on us. The invaders snatched several vehicles and loaded them with bags of assorted foodstuff before fleeing the area”, he queried.
Several residents who escaped the onslaught are now taking refuge in the bush for fear of the unknown. We hope government will come to our rescue because we have lost everything”, cried.