By Ndahi Marama, Abdulsalam Muhammad, CALEB AYANSINA & FATIMAH KAREEM
Maiduguri—Over 70 suspected Boko Haram terrorists, who participated in separate attacks on Chuha I, Chuha II and Korogilim villages of Chibok Local Government Area of Borno State last weekend, have been killed in an air raid, with support from ground troops of the 7 Division, Nigerian Army, sources and residents have said.
This came on a day a suicide bomber blew himself and seven others up at Kano School of Hygiene Technology along Gida Murtala-BUK road yesterday, while 20 persons sustained life-threatening injuries.
Meanwhile, the Federal Government, yesterday, said it had mobilised emergency services to the site of the Kano bomb blast.
It would be recalled that more than 40 people, including teenagers, were killed weekend when suspected Islamist militants, otherwise known as Boko Haram, attacked three villages in Chibok, razed down houses, shops and vehicles before carting away foodstuffs and livestock.
Vanguard gathered from reliable sources that with the quick intervention of the military on ground and airstrikes, over 70 of the terrorists, who were fleeing towards Sambisa Forest after the onslaught on innocent villagers, were killed.
A resident’s tale
A resident of Korogilim, one of the villages that suffered the deadly attacks, Mr. Joshua Yakubu in a telephone call, confirmed the incident, which he said took place on Sunday morning. He said the terrorists, who were moving in a convoy, were attacked by military operatives while attempting to flee after their deadly mission in three Chibok communities.
The resident said: “I want to inform you that we are happy with the gallant effort displayed by the military for quick intervention which led to the killing of dozens of terrorists who wreaked havoc in our communities over the weekend as almost all of them were wiped out.
“Initially, when we started hearing sounds of explosions on the outskirt of our villages, we thought the end of the world had come. We later confirmed that the explosions were from troops targeting fleeing terrorists that attacked and killed many of our people.
“I was among those that took courage and visited the scene of the bombardment yesterday, where we saw many dead and mangled bodies of the terrorists lying on the ground and hanging from tree branches and shrubs.
“In fact, they were more than a hundred dead bodies. The food items they looted during the attacks were scattered all over the scene. People are trooping in to see things for themselves.”
Confirming the killing of the terrorists in a text message yesterday, Director, Defence Information, Major General Chris Olukolade, said: “Yes, it happened.”
Meanwhile, a suicide bomber, yesterday, blew himself up at Kano School of Hygiene Technology located along Gida Murtala-BUK road, killing seven, while 20 persons sustained life-threatening injuries.
The victims of the blast were new intakes of the school undergoing screening.
Kano State Commissioner of Police, Adelenre Shinaba, revealed that eight vehicles parked within the premises of the state-owned tertiary institution were damaged. He said the incident occurred around 2.05p.m. when new students of the College were undergoing screening.
The commissioner disclosed that a suspect was apprehended at the scene and ruled out car bombing in this latest attack by the insurgents.
He said: “Every lead seems to point at suicide bombing. Unlike our previous experience, none of the vehicles parked inside this school caught fire and there is no hole around to suggest a car bombing. All leads are still open for investigation.”
The Commissioner further disclosed that lifeless bodies of the affected students had been deposited in the morgue, while the injured were receiving treatment at an undisclosed government hospital.
The explosive triggered pandemonium in the area as security agents, who arrived the scene cordoned off the busy highway, resulting in traffic snarl.
The scene was littered with shattered windscreen as human blood doted the school premises.
The Public Relations Officer of the school, Mallam Muhammad, revealed that mangled bodies of victims were recovered from the scene with polythene bags, adding that “it was a terrible sight to behold when we came for rescue.
“We were conducting screening for our new intakes when a suicide bomber penetrated the orderly queue and blew himself up.”
The Federal Government, through Coordinator of the National Information Centre, Mr. Mike Omeri, who disclosed this, yesterday, during the routine briefing on the abducted Chibok schoolgirls and security situation in the country, in Abuja, also appealed for public understanding on the imposition of curfew in the crisis-prone states.
Omeri said: “Emergency services have been fully mobilised to the scene of the incident, while investigation is still ongoing. Government expresses displeasure at these continuing acts of senseless killing of innocent persons, which has yet to benefit anyone.”
“It should be noted that curfew are purely for security and safety purposes. The public is hereby implored not only to obey, but also adhere strictly to curfew periods,” Omeri urged.
He revealed that two persons found loitering around Aba prisons in Abia State have been arrested and handed over to troops in the state for further investigation.
The suspects, who were arrested by the officers of the Nigerian prisons around the Aba prisons are Sani Sule and Idris Rume.