BY NDAHI MARAMA

MAIDUGURI- An explosion, Tuesday, rocked London Ciki ward of Maiduguri Metropolis on leaving four persons dead including a suspected member of Jama’atu Ahlis Sunnah Lidda’awati Wal Jihad, also known as Boko Haram and a 9-year old child.

Eleven others were said to be seriously injured while a residential house of an Islamic scholar, the Imam of Maikatanga mosque, Mallam Goni Modu was burnt down.

It was gathered that, the Improvised Explosive Device (IED) which was targeted at the patrol vehicle of the Joint Task Force, JTF, in the area was planted on the busy Tashan Bala Road. A suspected member of Boko Haram, who was trying to detonate it was killed.

An eye witness who spoke to our correspondent on condition of anonymity said he was coming out from his residence some few metres away from the scene when he heard a loud sound and quickly rushed back to his house for safety.

Another eye witness, Mallam Gana Bukar who came to the area to condole his relatives over the demise of their son, said: “ I was very lucky to escape not being hurt or injured in the blast, as it happened close to where I was coming from, but unfortunately, after 10 minutes, I saw one of the patrol vehicles of the JTF conveying some dead bodies with injured ones to an undisclosed hospital.

Confirming the blast to newsmen in Maiduguri in a telephone conversation, the Field Operation Officer of the Joint Task Force in Borno, Colonel. Ebhaleme said an IED was targeted at a military patrol vehicle very close to a densely populated residential area “but they were unable to hit any of our men nor operational vehicles. We heard the explosion around 9 a.m, after which we quickly rushed to the scene of the incident where we discovered that a suspected Boko Haram sect member died in the process of detonating an explosive devise”.

The Field Operation Officer also revealed that the JTF members were able to recover some arms and ammunitions from the Vehicle which the suspected bomber drove before the explosion went off, even as he could not give the number of casualties.

He however added that “we were able to rescue some women and children from one of the houses that went set ablaze as a result of the explosion. Right now, there is no need to panic, we have brought the situation under control and the fire service men are trying to put off the fire that has engulfed the scene.”

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