By Luka Binniyat
Last Wednesday, Kaduna metropolis, ever on the tether of Boko Haram threat, got lucky once more as two couriers of an explosive abruptly ended their sojourn on earth after their lethal cargo inadvertently set off before they hit their target.
The two suicide bombers, operating on a motor bike, were killed by their own devices at Abakwa, along Ali Akilu Road, as they were heading towards Ungwan Sarki Area, according to Kaduna State Police Spokesman, Abubakar Balteh, (ASP).
With that development, Kaduna heaved a sigh of relief, as no one could have predicted the outcome if the bikers had delivered their consignment.
Kaduna, unsettled, since 1992, by a rhythm of mindless bloodshed between mainly Hausa/Fulani Muslims on the northern part of the Kaduna river and mainly Christian enclave of non Hausa/Fulani tribal groupings south of the river, was just recuperating from a major violence that took place in June.
A coordinated suicide mission in June, later claimed by an Islamist group, had led to the bombings of two churches in Zaria, and another in Kaduna leaving about 21 worshipers dead, and scores injured.
As if on cue, Christian youths south of the Kaduna river took to the streets and visited mayhem on any Hausa/Fulani Muslim found, leaving corpses on the streets that Sunday afternoon.
Governor Patrick Yakowa of Kaduna State, immediately placed a 24-hour curfew on the state, just to partially lift the embargo on movement the next Tuesday. Hausa/Fulani Muslim youth took advantage of this and launched murderous assault on non-Muslims caught withintheir strongholds.
Before then, precisely in January, two members of the Islamist group, Boko Haram, which claimed responsibility for the bombings, had rammed through the gates of I Div Mechanised Division of the Nigerian Army, Kawo Kaduna a jeep that exploded and killed the two. The Army authorities said none of their personnel was hurt in the assault.
Since the June unrest sparked by the bombings, there seemed a kind of lull on Boko Haram’s bombings until last Wednesday’s.
Here is a catalogue of the activities of the Islamist group to inflict maximmum damage on prime targets usually Christians and security personnel in Kaduna.
April 8 2011 Police uncover massive bombing plots after bomb kills one
On this day, three hours after the Kaduna State Police Command said it was aware of plans for massive violence to disrupt the presidential poll, a bomb exploded in Mahuta, a suburb, killing the handler and maiming one Mohammed, a suspected accomplice who was rushed to St. Gerald Hospital Kaduna under police cover.
The police said it found over 100 strands of dynamites loaded in three sacks in the home of the arrested bomber, enough to cause havoc in a few streets.
17 April 2011 Police arrest 4 foreigners after two bomb blasts
The Kaduna State Police Command this day paraded four arrested foreigners and a suspected Nigerian accomplice after two bombs exploded the previous night at an interval of two hours injuring eight and destroying some structures
According to the then Kaduna State Police Commissioner, Mr. John Haruna (now deceased), the second explosion, which took place near a high profile public gathering place around 10:30 pm that night at Magajin Gari Sharia Court, was a powerful bomb that could have killed hundreds if it had been detonated at a busy hour.
22 April 2011 Bomb making factory uncovered after blast killed one.
The state Police Command on this day took newsmen to a bomb making shop it had uncovered at the Rafin Guza area of Kaduna metropolis. The police also displayed recovered arms from the shop.
The late Haruna John said eight persons had been arrested three of whom were critically injured during the blast which occurred at about 6.00pm the previous day.
June 11, 2011 Police find bomb at Gonin Gora market
Police Anti-Bomb Disposal Squad on this day discovered and detonated a live bomb in a market place in Gonin Gora area of Kaduna metropolis at about 11 am.
The state police spokesperson, DSP Aminu Lawan, said, “it is an explosive object discovered by the people and they quickly alerted us and we were able to move to the scene, recovered and detonated the object immediately”.
June 13, 2011 Bomb found at NNPC quarters
The police on this day recovered an explosive lclose to the NNPC staff quarters at Narayi, Kaduna.
“Our men were alerted to the presence of an explosive around 4am by the security man”, said Kaduna State Police Command spokesman, DSP Amuni Lawal.
“We quickly mobilised our team and decommissioned the bomb. We are investigating the matter”, he said.
14 June 2011 Strategically placed bomb found near school.
On this day, a bomb, strategically placed under a bridge near a high profile private secondary school which, if exploded, could have cut off Southern part of Kaduna metropolises from its North, was discovered by the police.
The bomb was planted on a rail track near an overhead bridge behind Dambo International School around Barnawa GRA in the heart of Kaduna city.
The officer in charge of the Police Anti-Bomb Squad, DSP Patrick David Effiong, who spoke at the scene of the discovery, said, “The explosive is capable of causing massive destruction of the rails into fragments and buildings and cutting off the bridge”
December 6, 2011 Bomb explosion kills 8
A shattering explosion in the heart of Kaduna metropolis in the morning rush hours of this day bought down a block of shops and apartments, which promptly went under smouldering flames leading to the agonising death of 8
February 7, 2012 Police find, detonate bomb.
The police on this day found a bomb in a compound and promptly detonate the explosive safely.The bomb was discovered in the Tudun Wada house of Hon. Auwalu Ali Tafoki, a former chairman of Kaduna South Local Area
The discovery created panic and anxiety making residents of the area to scamper for safety as it was believed to be capable of destroying the whole area. however, it was expertly detonated by men of the Police Anti Bomb Squad without a single casualty recorded.
April 1 2012
Bomb kills lone bomber in Kaduna
A lone man suspected to be making improvised bombs was this day killed by an explosion at Unguwan Muazu area of Kaduna, said Kaduna State Police spokesman, Deputy Superintendent
of police(DSP) Aminu Lawal in a telephone interview.” The explosion happened at Unguwan Muazu and killed a lone person we suspect to be making explosives. And we mobilized our Anti-Bomb Squad in the area. I can tell you based on the report I got from the place one person died. This was around 7pm this evening”, he said.
April 8 2012 Suicide bomber kills 36, injures 13.
A suicide bomber’s car laden with a bomb accidentally exploded at Sardauna Crescent junction, Kaduna after he failed to gain entrance into the 1st ECWA Good News Church, on Gwari Road, not far from the point of the incident. At least 36 people, mostly Hausa Muslims, were killed.