Terrorist kills self, others in Yobe

Gaidam-ok• Group seeks UN’s action against Boko Haram

A SUSPECTED suicide bomber who disguised as a passenger, detonated an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) at the Potiskum Bulala Motor Park in Yobe State, killing five people, including herself, and injuring 36 others at about 9.50am Sunday.

 Potiskum is said to be the largest commercial town in Yobe, and 100 kilometres west of Damaturu, the state capital.

An eyewitness, Dahiru Ibrahim, Sunday in a telephone interview said the suspect targeted the open motor park on Jos road to hit the area with deafening sound of explosion across the town, before soldiers and policemen rushed to the scene at 10.04am. “I cannot give you the exact number of passengers and other passersby

killed, but certainly, five people were killed, their bodies were dismembered, as several other injured passengers scampered for safety before the military and police

personnel arrived and condoned off the area to prevent further attacks and bombing of the town.” 

  Hospital authorities also told The Guardian on phone that 41 people were injured and five others confirmed dead. “After receiving 41 injured people brought in by the rescue team after 10 am, five were confirmed dead, with the remaining 36 hospitalized for treatment.” The hospital said nine victims were referred to the Federal Medical Centre (FMC), Azare and the one in Nguru.

 “The explosion went off around 9:50 Sunday morning at the Bulala Motor Park close to Ibal filling Station along Jos road. As I speak, we counted five dead bodies; but so many others are lying critically injured and are being conveyed to the nearby hospital in Potiskum for immediate medical attention by 10am yesterday.”

  Sunday’s blast was the third within three weeks in Potiskum,  North East, where Boko Haram insurgency has affected several states since 2009. In the first week of January, this year a hawker was killed after a blast targeting footballers went off late evening while two female suicide bombers carried out a coordinated attack killing eight people in Potiskum last week.

  Meanwhile, horrified by the killings by Boko Haram, over 208,000 persons have signed a petition to be submitted to United Nations Security Council to take decisive action against the terrorist group.

  The petitioners who intend to collate about 500,000 signatures from all over the world, intend to demand from the UN Council to now prioritise a comprehensive plan that includes cleaning up and training security forces to contain Boko Haram; investing in the poorest regions of Nigeria; and prioritising an anti-corruption programme.

  A global civil movement, Avaaz , based in New York, with over 40 millions members around the world, which is behind the petition, said it is appalled by Boko Haram use of a 10-year-old girl as a bomb-detonator after killing up to 2,000 people in Nigeria. 

  Avaaz, in the petition made available to The Guardian by one of its founding members, Alice Jay,  condemned what it described as a reign of terror in Northern Nigeria, expressing sadness that the world has put this crisis in the “too hard to solve box , while  the UN Security Council hasn’t even issued a Presidential Statement on Nigeria!”

 Considering the global outrage caused by the recent killings in Baga, Avaaz observed that the escalating violence has renewed pressure on concerned individuals around the world to act.  “Let’s multiply that pressure now and persuade our leaders and the United Nations to convene an emergency Security Council meeting and prioritise this crisis.

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