July 18, 2024
Governor of Borno Zulum

The Borno State Government has expressed shock over the multiple bombings in the Gwoza area of the state which led to several deaths and injuries.

“It is not an intelligence failure. It is an error that we did not see coming,” the Borno State Commissioner for Information and Internal Security Usman Tar said on Monday’s edition of Channels Television’s breakfast show Sunrise Daily, days after the multiple explosions.

Scores of persons died in the string of bombings one of which happened during a wedding celebration in the North-Eastern state. Several others were also wounded in the Saturday attacks, emergency authorities said.

According to the commissioner, the attackers may have exploited the state’s porous borders to carry out the bombings.

“If terrorists want to attack and they use a particular route that you don’t know, what can you do? As you know our boundaries are porous that is internationally. Even our local boundaries are porous,” Usman said.

“If terrorists want to attack, they do it using the frontlines. That was what probably happened.”

But a community leader in Borno Ayuba Bassa has faulted the government and security authorities for not doing much to tackle insurgency. He said there were signs of such attacks coming but nothing was done to avert it.

He now wants the authorities to depart from rhetorics and said about 30 women to carry out the multiple bombings.

“We cannot trust the Army, we cannot trust the civilian JTF or anybody who stands in the name of politics that is willing to fight for these people anymore.

“It was really a black Saturday. It has affected Gwoza to the blood. What happened was the infiltration of trained women including a teenager as suicide bombers. They were able to come and carry out the mission. We have learned that they were above 30 who were trained to do that but a few of them succeeded,” Bassa who is the National Coordinator of the Gwoza Christian Community Association said.

“If the IDP camps are not dismissed, they will continue to be breeding grounds for more Boko Haram [terrorists].”

A Resurgence?

Although Boko Haram has lost ground in recent years, jihadists continue to attack rural communities in Nigeria on a regular basis.

Over the course of the insurgency, Boko Haram has repeatedly deployed young women and girls to carry out suicide attacks.

The group seized Gwoza in 2014 when its militants took over swathes of territory in northern Borno.

The town was taken back by the Nigerian military with help from Chadian forces in 2015 but the group has continued to launch attacks from mountains near the town.

Boko Haram has carried out raids, killing men and kidnapping women who venture outside the town in search of firewood and acacia fruits.

The violence has killed more than 40,000 people and displaced around two million in Nigeria’s northeast.

The conflict has spread to neighbouring Niger, Cameroon and Chad, prompting the formation of a regional military coalition to fight the militants.

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