From David Hassan, Gombe with agency report
- Takes over Ashaka Cement, renames Mubi
Unknown gunmen, suspected to be Boko Haram insurgents, yesterday again attacked and bombed a Divisional Police Headquarters in Nafada local government area of Gombe state.
According to reports, the incident occurred at 12:00pm when unknown gunmen stormed Nafada and started shooting sporadically before proceeding to the Divisional Police station and bombed it.
An eyewitness who did not want his name in print alleged that thousands of people in Nafada town were fleeing to the bush due to fear of being attacked by the assailants, noting that already many had found themselves out of the town for safety.
He said the assailants were in their numbers when they attacked the police station, adding, the policemen who were on duty had to run for safety before the assailant stormed the station. He said that no arrest was made during the attack.
He explained that during the attack, nobody was killed by the assailants saying that they burnt the police station with explosives.
Meanwhile, the attackers also killed five soldiers at a checkpoint before they proceeded to Nafada LGA. Reports also confirmed that the Emir’s palace in Nafada was razed down by the assailants, adding that the PDP secretariat was also torched.
Our correspondent reports that the assailants had advanced to the town, noting that residents in Gombe are now living with the fear of being attacked.
When our correspondent contacted the Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) DSP Fwaje Atajiri for comment his phone was switched off at the time of filling this report.
It could be recalled that last Friday a Motor park in Gombe was attacked by bombers that left scores of people dead while many sustained various degrees of injuries. However, according to the reports, 3 suspects were apprehended by the police in connection with the Gombe blast.
The militant group Boko Haram has also reportedly taken over the premises of a strategic cement manufacturing company in the state, the Ashaka Cement factory, shortly after killing five people including a Sheikh in a neighboring town.
Workers at the factory said the heavily armed militants arrived in convoy of pick up vans and began shooting indiscriminately at workers after the security guards at the company fled into the bush.
Meanwhile, the Boko Haram have instituted Shari’ah law in Mubi, Adamawa state, captured by the insurgents last week and have allegedly renamed it “Madinatul Islam”, meaning the city of Islam.
Aliyu Bala, one of the residents, who could not leave Mubi at the time of the invasion of the town by the insurgents, disclosed this in a telephone chat with journalists. He said the insurgents had taken complete control of the town.
“They mounted check points and surveillance at strategic locations, brandishing riffles but asking us not to panic or run away,” Mr. Bala said.
The trapped Mr. Bala said despite assurances of safety given to them by Boko Haram, thousands of the trapped residents have been sneaking out preferring not to take any chances.
The insurgents were also said to have amputated the hands of 10 residents said to have been found guilty of sundry offences, including looting of property of fleeing residents.
Sources in Mubi town said they saw the terrorists parading 10 persons whose hands were said to have been amputated in the presence of residents the insurgents asked to converge to witness the enforcement of Sharia law.
The source further said that the Emir’s palace in Mubi had been converted to the residence of the ‘Amir’ and that the insurgents hoisted their flags to signify that they were in control of the palace.
Our correspondent learnt that the most affected by the development in Mubi were students of the Adamawa State University and the Federal Polytechnic, Mubi. The students were said to have gone through torture before some of them reportedly escaped through the border between Nigeria and Cameroun.
Some of them were said to still be in the bush.
The insurgents urged displaced residents of captured communities of Adamawa state to return home, assuring them of safety in the “Islamic Caliphate.”, saying their mode of prayer was different from what Muslims in the town were used to and that they were “in Mubi to restore Islamic independence to the people and anybody who does not follow us must be killed.”
“We are not to hurt anyone but to free the people from religious slavery,” a source quoted the insurgents to have said.
Four local governments: Michika, Madagali, Mubi-North and Mubi-South in Adamawa state, have now fallen under the grip of Boko Haram leading to the displacement of thousands.