By Umar Yusuf & Ndahi Marama
YOLA — FOR the first time, Yola, capital of Adamawa State suffered an attack from insurgents of the Boko Haram sect, which launched attacks on Adamawa and Borno states, killing 14 persons and injuring several others.
10 persons were killed in Yola, the Adamawa State capital, while four were killed in Maiduguri, Borno State capital.
In Maiduguri, a suicide bomber detonated his Improvised Explosive Device (IED) near a military checkpoint at Shagari Low-cost Housing Estate, along Maiduguri-Monguno Eoad, killing four people with several others seriously injured.
Shagari low cost estate is on the outskirt of Maiduguri metropolis and about 200 metres away from the 7 Division, of the Nigerian Army. Shagari low cost estate is about five kilometres from the city of Maiduguri. This came barely 24 hours after a twin blast exploded Wednesday at the timber shed market along Baga Road, near the 7 Division Headquarters, that left scores dead.
The fresh explosion, yesterday, according to sources, occurred at a military checkpoint around Shagari low cost estate when the suicide bomber who had planned to wreak havoc in the city of Maiduguri decided to detonate his wares at the checkpoint when he realized that it would be difficult for him to beat the security mounted by the operatives.
The source said “four people including the suicide bomber died at the checkpoint, but I cannot tell you whether security operatives were part of the victims.
“It was at about 6pm when motorists and residents were rushing home to beat the 7pm curfew when a suicide bomber that was in one of the vehicles waiting to be checked detonated his explosives, killing four people with scores injured.
“Both the dead and the injured were evacuated to an undisclosed hospital in Maiduguri, while security operatives quickly cordoned off the area to prevent further attacks and killings”, the source stated.
Confirming the incident, the Police Commissioner, Mr. Aderemi Opadokun said:
“It is true. It happened near a military checkpoint. “Two persons dead and three injured”, Opadokun stated.
10 killed in Yola
Also yesterday, a bomb blast suspected to be from a suicide bomber occurred in Yola, the capital city of Adamawa State, for the first time since the Boko Haram menace started in the North-East.
One witness said at least 10 people were killed and about 30 injured.
A resident of the town, Salihu Aliyu, said that the blast happened in front of the Jimeta main market at about 7:45pm.
“We just finished observing the Maghrib prayer when we heard a loud blast near the market. He added that the casualty figure was likely to be high because the explosion occurred when many traders had closed their shops, and were rushing home.
“You know many traders also come out of the market and display their wares outside the main market to also observe the night market. There was even traffic gridlock in the area with many Keke Napep operators (tricycle operators) jostling for passengers when the bomb exploded”, he said.
Adamawa Police image maker, ASP Abubakar Othman confirmed the blast but could not give the casualty figure.
The entire area has been cordoned off by the military as the capital city remained quiet and deserted.
Attacks in Adamawa
Adamawa State has been enmeshed in a series of attacks these past few days, the most recent being the attack on traders in a popular building material market in Jimeta Monday. The attack left two dead and two others in a critical state.
Barely 24 hours before that, gunmen killed three people at the entrance of the Jimeta ultra-modern market.
In addition, some armed gangs attacked and killed a First Bank manager in Damilu, opposite the Yola International Airport, and made away with his car in the wee hours of Sunday.
The attackers of the bank manager did not go unpunished as they were chased and caught by security officials as they tried to escape towards Maiduguri, Borno State. They were stopped by a detachment of military personnel stationed along Gombi-Biu Road.
The Army Public Relations Officer, Victor Olukoya, and Police Public Relations Officer, Yoila Nemuel, who jointly addressed the press on Tuesday in Yola, said the information gathered from the arrested armed gangs led them to a hideout of the criminal gangs in Jambutu “where a significant breakthrough was recorded in the fight against the Boko Haram sect”. Prior to this, the security officers said, a joint effort had led to the uncovering of a bomb factory in the state.