Troops of the 7 Division of the Nigerian Army, weekend, killed over 50 Boko Haram terrorists in Bita village of Gwoza Local Government Area of Borno State on their way to attack some villages in Borno and Adamawa states.
However, suspected Boko Haram gunmen have reportedly kidnapped 20 women from a nomadic settlement in the North-East near Chibok, where over 200 schoolgirls were abducted in April.
Alhaji Tar, a member of the vigilante group in the area, said the men arrived at noon, weekend, in the Garkin Fulani settlement and forced the women into their vehicles at gunpoint, adding that three young men that tried to stop the
kidnapping were also abducted.
Meanwhile, residents of the ancient town of Dikwa, Borno State, ran into the bush when faulty solar street light batteries exploded in a store yesterday. The loud explosion was followed by sporadic gunshots by security forces.
The Fence Headquarters, in a statement by the Director, Defense information, Major General Chris Olukolade, said: “Troops conducting anti-terrorists campaign in North-Eastern Nigeria have successfully averted attempted massive raid on villages in Borno and Adamawa states, during the weekend.
“The terrorists, who were on their way to attack selected communities, were ambushed by troops along Bilta, Borno State, on receiving intelligence report of the terrorists’ intention.”
The statement said the attack was launched on the terrorists as they filed out of the forest to embark on their mission at about 10p.m. on Saturday.
“Over 50 terrorists died in the fierce encounter that ensued, while 30 rifles, 36 hand grenades, seven machine guns and 11 rocket-propelled grenade tubes were captured by the troops,” General Olukolade added.
Also recovered from the terrorists were over 3,500 rounds of ammunition, six smoke grenade canisters, locally fabricated guns and four vehicles.
The army stated that four soldiers were injured in the operation and are currently receiving medical treatment in the military medical facility.
In Dikwa, there was confusion occasioned by mass exodus of people, including women and children, yesterday, after a thunderous blast.
A senior security official in Maiduguri said: “There was no attack in Dikwa by the terror group. The locals were actually scared when they heard a scaring bang, which was caused by some solar light batteries kept in a store.
“Soon after the ‘blast’ troops in Dikwa fired friendly shots into the air and the residents mistook the development and fled.
“Many people took to the bushes because they thought our men were engaging the terrorists. I want to assure you that normalcy has returned.”
Vanguard also gathered that the Divisional Police Officer of Dikwa and his team visited the scene and discovered that the batteries exploded due to excessive heat.
BY NDAHI MARAMA