BY NDAHI MARAMA, MAIDUGURI
Suspected members of dreaded Boko Haram insurgents who stormed Magumeri Local Government Area of Borno state with six hilux vehicles mounted with Anti Aircraft Guns and several motorcycles were feared dead when troops repelled the attack which took place on Wednesday at about 6pm.
The sporadic shooting by the terrorists at the residents led to the killing of unspecified number of people before setting ablaze houses. Unconfirmed sources have said.
This incident is coming barely 24 hours when four suicide bombers sneaked into Maiduguri Metropolis through Muna Alkomi General area of Konduga Local Government Area, living three civilians dead and 16 others injured after detonating explosives strapped on their bodies.
Magumeri which is in Northern Borno Senatorial District and about 45km away from Maiduguri has been peaceful for over few years.
Fleeing residents who spoke to our Correspondent said, the insurgents who were armed with AK47 rifles, petrol bombs and other dangerous weapons unleashed terror before confrontation by troops of 8 Task Force Division, Operation LAFIYA DOLE.
“Our town is under heavy attack this evening, the insurgents large in number stormed Magumeri at about 6:30pm when Muslim Ummah were performing Magrib prayers.
“I cannot ascertain the number of casualty as we were all terrified and scamper for safety, i can see flames all over some places in the town”. Mallam Ali Baba Umar, a fleeing resident said.
Confirming the incident on Thursday (Today) in a statement, Director Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Usman Sani Kukasheka said, Troops of 8 Task Force Division, Operation LAFIYA DOLE have thwarted attack of Magumeri town, Borno State Wednesday evening.
“The terrorists who came with some vehicles at about 6.00pm attempted to set the town ablaze and kill the residents but the timely intervention of the troops prevented that mishap.
“The troops have neutralized quite a number of the attackers and those that escaped with gun shot wounds are being pursued.
“So far, the troops have recovered 3 vehicles and large quantity of arms and ammunition.
“While troops are still consolidating and mopping up, it is imperative to state that preliminary investigation shows that the attackers of Magumeri came from the same community. The terrorists that attack the village are well known to the people.
“It should also be noted that the village was never attacked throughout the period of the insurgency for some inexplicable reasons. The terrorists and their collaborators hibernating in the area were never exposed. There seems to be unholy alliance between the terrorists and the villagers.
“Consequently, we are constrained to state that it’s now high time for the people to take up the fight themselves and help the Nigerian military and other security agencies to protect them. It is a grievous mistake and criminal offence to continue to shield or harbour any known Boko Haram terrorist in their midst.
“The terrorists must be exposed and their movements promptly reported to the security agencies. The terrorists are inhuman and barbaric, therefore cannot be trusted to spare anyone in perpetuating their inhuman acts.
“It is imperative that all communities in the North East especially Borno State, should fully cooperate with the military and the Security agencies by exposing Boko Haram terrorists in their respective towns and villages”. Sani said. End