Clashes between the military forces and some Boko Haram militants in Borno State at the weekend left no fewer than 20 persons dead.
Gunmen suspected of Boko Haram sect members yesterday attacked Damboa Local Government area of Borno State with Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and petrol-bombs, killing five residents at a mosque with the torching of the district head’s palace and shops at 4.30am yesterday.
Damboa is 87 kilometres south of Maiduguri, the Borno State capital where suspected insurgents two weeks ago slaughtered and also shot dead over 48 motorists, passengers and other civilians, including 18 members of the vigilance group at the market square and along the busy Maiduguri -Biu federal highway which was closed down in the heat of the emergency rule, only to be reopened again last month.
It was gathered that politiin repelling the attack by men of the ‘7 Division’, Nigerian Army Maiduguri, 15 of the terrorists were killed with the recovery of arms and ammunition in their possession. Confirming the incident in a press release which was signed by the spokesman of ‘7 Division’ of Nigerian Army, Capt. Aliyu Ibrahim Danja, made available to Journalists in Maiduguri yesterday said, “no fewer than 15 Boko Haram terror suspects were killed in the early hours of Saturday, while the troops of 21 Brigade repelled the gunmen in Damboa at a mosque and a palace of the District Head.”
He said besides the repulsion of the terror suspects, arms and ammunition were also recovered from the terrorists, including a rocket propelled grenade tube, two rocket propelled grenade bombs, five AK 47 rifles, a pick-up vehicle and assorted ammunition.
On how Damboa was attacked, Capt. Danja said, “The terrorists whose strength is unknown sneaked into the town at about 4.30am today, and attacked worshippers in a mosque and killed five of them, who came to perform their morning prayers. They also set ablaze the official residence and palace of the District Head along with some shops, public and residential buildings.
“While they were unleashing their mayhem, troops under 7 Division engaged the terrorists, killing 15 in the process while others fled in disarray. Efforts are on to trace and destroy the fleeing terror suspects,” he stated in the release.
While thanking residents for their cooperation with the military, Capt. Danja said, “we wish to thank members of the general public for their resilience and efforts by providing timely and useful information to security agencies; and we urged them to be security conscious by reporting any movement of unknown persons within their localities to the nearest Army or security agencies.”