- Curfew imposed on Damaturu
- As police foil anti-terror protest in Kaduna
Soldiers attached to the 7 Division of the Nigerian Army, Maiduguri yesterday morning repelled what could have been another deadly attack by members of the dreaded Boko Haram sect in Konduga Local Government Area of Borno State, killing 68 insurgents.
Konduga is about 40 kilometres drive from Maiduguri, the state capital. Recently, troops in the area with support from civilian JTF repelled another attack, killing over 200 militants. It was also in the same encounter in which the military authorities claimed that the leader of the sect suspected to be imposter of Abubakar Shekau was among those killed.
The latest incident came barely 24 hours after twin bomb explosions, allegedly detonated by two female suicide bombers went off at the Maiduguri Monday Market, killing 20 persons.
Security sources and residents of the area told newsmen that, the insurgents came into the town at about 5:00am but met stiff resistance from the army who chased them away.
A senior security personnel, who declined identification confirmed the incident to newsmen saying: “Yes, there was an attempted attack by the insurgents in Konduga , the invaders came in hundreds trying to enter the town with sophisticated weapons, but our men were able to clear them.
“Many of them were killed. Nobody can tell you the number of those killed and wounded, but not less than 67 Boko Haram insurgents were killed while many were wounded and ran away, picking some of the dead bodies,” the source claimed.
“It took us not less than 2- 3 hours to bring them down or repel, hence we are also ready and prepared for them anytime. Our men really did a god job, were courageous and barge enough to standstill to clear the terrorists,” the source added.
A resident of the area, one Modu Goni also told newsmen that the insurgents came in around 5am and it took the military almost three hours to repel their onslaught.
He said the whole town was thrown into another confusion and panic. People were afraid and stayed indoors throughout the morning, until much later when people started coming out for the day’s activities.
Military authorities could not be reached for comment as at press time.
Meanwhile, a female suicide bomber arrested by the vigilante group also known as civilian JTF yesterday has revealed that, 50 female suicide bombers have been released on Maiduguri, the Borno State capital with a target of 100,000 people before the end of December 2014.
Similarly, Yobe State governor, Alhaji Ibrahim Gaidam has approved the imposition of a 24-hour curfew in Damaturu, the State Capital.
The curfew is effective immediately.
All Damaturu residents were advised to remain in their homes during the hours of the curfew.
“This decision is taken in consultation with heads of law enforcement agencies in the State as part of measures to enable the security agents, who did a great job yesterday repelling insurgent attacks on the town, to conclude their ongoing assignment.
“His Excellency Governor Gaidam has expressed his appreciation to the residents of the State Capital and to people all across the State, for their support and cooperation with security agents.
“The governor urges people to continue to support the security efforts and to pray to Almighty Allah (SWT) for the return of peace and security.” A statement signed by Abdullahi Bego, Special Adviser on Press Affairs and Information to Governor Ibrahim Gaidam said.
This is even as the police on Tuesday disrupted an anti-Boko Haram protest in Kaduna.
A peaceful protest against the sustained Boko Haram killings in the north by a coalition of youth groups under the umbrella of Arewa Liberation Movement was disrupted by the men of the Nigeria Police in Kaduna.
The protest, which started at 8:30am at the popular Lugard Hall Roundabout was led by comrade Yusuf Amokhe before about 7 trucks loaded with armed policemen came and disrupted the protest.
One of the journalists that claimed to have been assaulted in the process, an expatriate from Scotland working for Liberty Television, a Kaduna-based station, Mr. Arthur Brooks, said the Police tried to intimidate him and his other colleagues to release their cameras and other equipment, but he refused to be intimidated.
He said the protest was peaceful and the police officers around behaved in an orderly manner, but later a different set of police officers arrived and started chasing everybody away and the initial peaceful atmosphere became chaotic.
Brooks said: “I was not assaulted, but intimidated, I was used to situations like this, I have been in this profession for a very long time and I have seen this kind behaviour in the past.”