30 feared killed in Adamawa suicide bomb explosions
• 20 die in Maiduguri mosque explosion
• Sunday’s death toll hits 52, 124 injured
IT was a Monday of tears and pain for residents of Madagali Town, Adamawa State when suspected female suicide bombers attacked a busy motor park in the town killing about 60 persons, leaving many more injured.
An eyewitness witness, Danladi Buba, said the two female suicide bombers detonated Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) near the motor park around 9:00 a.m. Also, an explosion in a Maiduguri mosque yesterday left about 20 people dead.
Meanwhile, the death toll of Maiduguri multiple bomb blasts in Borno State on Sunday, yesterday hit 52 with 124 injured and being treated at the state Specialist Hospital, Umaru Shehu Ultra-Modern Hospital and the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH), Maiduguri.
Out of the 85 injured ones brought to the state specialist hospital, nine were, however, referred to UMTH, because of their higher degree burns and gunshot wounds.
These were disclosed yesterday by the Chief Medical Directors of the Specialist Hospital and Umaru Shehu Hospital, Dr. Laraba Bello and Dr. Salisu Kwaya Bura, while briefing Governor Kashim Shettima on the state of patients at the hospitals.
On the Madagali attack, Buba said:“ Very many people, about 30 people were killed with 16 others injured.”
When contacted, the Brigade Commander of 28 Task Force Brigade, Mubi, Brigadier-General Victor Ezugwu, confirmed the incident, saying though, the exact casualty figure was yet to be established.
“Two female suicide bombers struck at a motor park in Madagali and detonated their devices, and we lost some beloved countrymen,” Ezugwu said. He also said the injured had been taken to hospital while the military had cordoned off the area. The brigade commander said the situation had been brought under control and that normalcy would soon return though he stressed that soldiers and other security agents were on high alert.
The Adamawa House of Assembly member representing Madagali, Mr. Emmanuel Tandu, told The Guardian that local hunters who participated in the rescue efforts after the incident told him that they picked up 12 bodies and 19 injured persons.
The National Environmental Management Agency (NEMA) boss in Adamawa, Saad Bello, also confirmed the attack.
The explosion in the Maiduguri mosque went off as residents speculated that a fleeing Boko Haram bomber had abandoned an IED in the area during Sunday night’s attack on the city.
A police officer,who spoke anonymously on the matter said the victims had gathered to investigate if a bomb was truly abandoned in the mosque as was being speculated.
“I have never seen such foolishness that people would go peeping into a mosque to find out if truly there was an explosive device left in the place.
Unfortunately, there was a bomb in the mosque and when it exploded, over 20 persons were killed and many injured,” he said.
But another account differed, explaining that the victims were relaxing around the mosque after prayers as they are wont to. According to Malam Suleiman, a primary school teacher: “The people normally sit down around the mosque in the morning. It is like a meeting point where neighbours converge to relax. After the morning prayers they just sat down outside the mosque as usual and then the bomb went off. It was not suicide bombing like that of last night. It may have been planted by insurgents fleeing from troops on Sunday night.”
A civil servant Yunusa Abdullahi, who lives in Jiddari Polo area of the city, said aside from the mosque attack, two girls detonated explosives at a neighbourhood called Buraburin.
“A man saw two girls walking around and he tried to caution them to be careful as it was dangerous for them to be wandering about. We understand the man had hardly finished speaking when the two girls detonated the devices strapped on their bodies, killing the man and some other persons,” Abdullahi said.
He continued: “Since last night, residents have been finding undetonated bombs believed to have been abandoned by Boko Haram insurgents. It seems that while they were engaging soldiers in Sunday’s attack, they also used that as a diversion to bring in these female suicide bombers who they have turned loose in Maiduguri. For some time, we had been spared the death and destruction by these suicide bombers but now we do not know what will happen. We are under siege and we don’t know how many of these bombs or these female suicide bombers were sneaked into Maiduguri,” he said.
According to Dr. Laraba , 32 bodies were deposited in the hospital morgue, while 85 injured people were admitted yesterday with nine of the patients referred to UMTH for further treatments for burns and multiple fractures.
At the Umaru Shehu Hospital, Dr. Bura also said that 39 injured persons were brought in yesterday, with one pregnant woman giving up the ghost.
“We were able to discharge some of the injured persons, after they had been treated for minor burns and cuts. Right now as I speak to you, your excellency, 15 are already admitted for treatment for higher
degree burns and gunshot wounds sustained in Sunday and Monday’s multiple bomb blasts at Bakkassi, Sabon Gari and Jiddari-Polo wards of Maiduguri,” Bura said.
He and his colleagues confirmed to The Guardian that 52 people died along while 124 were injured.
On yesterday’s mosque blast, Sadik Mohammed, a patient, said: “We are the only two survivors of Monday’s mosque blast. Three of my siblings and my father were killed.”
He said it was a suspected female suicide bomber who attacked them with her strapped explosives, while they were praying in the mosque located behind the CBN quarters, Maiduguri.
The General Officer Commanding of 7 Division of the Nigerian Army, Maj-Gen. Lamidi Adeosun yesterday at the press briefing at the Media Centre of Operation Lafiya Dole said that 26 residents died, with 86 others injured in Sunday and Monday’s multiple blasts.
Reacting to the blasts, Governor Shettima after visiting the injured in the hospitals, condemned the incessant attacks and killings in the state.
His words: “We will urge our people to be extra vigilant and to report all suspicious movements to the nearest military formations. Our head is bloody but remains unbowed. We believe that the worst is over and God willing, we shall strive to give hope to the hopeless; and a cause of joy to the down-trodden. That will not deter us; we will continue to preach peace, dialogue, tolerance and understanding. But for these lunatics, by the grace of God, their days are numbered. They can inflict pains on us certainly, but our spirit remains high.”