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15-Year-Old Bombs Mosque, Kills 10
THE Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar Garbai Al-amin El-Kanemi and the Borno State deputy governor, Alhaji Zannah Umar Mustapha, on Friday, narrowly escaped death following a suicide bomb blast by a 15-year-old boy at the Maiduguri Central Mosque shortly after Juma’at prayers.
Saturday Tribune gathered that the explosion occurred while the deputy governor was accompanying the royal father to his car.
According to sources, the royal father and the deputy governor had to take refuge at the Government House.
A witness said shortly after the Juma’at, there were sporadic gun shots followed by an explosion outside the mosque leading to a number of deaths.
He claimed pieces of human flesh and their body parts were scattered all over the place as the worshipper scampered for safety.
“There was an explosion and gunshots outside the Shehu’s mosque. The police and military personnel responded, as people took to their heels in the ensuing confusion. I also learnt that the blast was caused by a suicide bomber, who was targeting the royal father and the deputy governor.
“However, the Improvised explosive Device (IED) exploded before he could force his way through the crowd to get to them,” he told Saturday Tribune.
According to another source, a lot of people were affected as the pieces of flesh and parts of the suicide bomber as well as innocent people were scattered all over the place.
“I saw some people being assisted to their feet by security personnel, while others were seen lying down at the scene,” the source alleged.
A source at the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital told newsmen that security officials brought in two soldiers to the Accident and Emergency ward, with one of the soldiers brought in dead, while the other was in a critical condition.
When newsmen contacted the Commissioner of Police, Borno State Command, Bala Hassan, he said he was on his way to the scene of the incident to assess the extent of damage.
Also confirming the incident, a top official of the Joint Task Force on Operation Restore Order in the state told Saturday Tribune that he was at the scene of the incident.
He said five people were feared dead, while six others were critically injured, among them soldiers who had tried to stop the suicide bomber from reaching the royal father and the deputy governor.
Other sources claimed that 10 persons were killed in the blast.
When Saturday Tribune visited the deputy governor at his official residence, the atmosphere was tense.
Mustapha, who spoke with emotions to newsmen, said he thought he had lost one of his legs when pressure from the blast practically removed his shoes.
His clothe was also soaked with blood from the blast victims.
He said: “Actually, the bomb did not explode in the mosque. It was detonated outside the mosques after we had finish the Friday prayers and we came out. As we were about parting with the royal father, suddenly the bomb was detonated and there was confusion everywhere.
He decried the development, saying “we all thought that we were getting out of this crisis situation in Borno State, but with what happened today, everything seems as if we are getting nowhere in our efforts at ensuring peace in the state.”
He said the state government and security agencies would intensify efforts on intelligence gathering in order to achieve the goal of bringing the ugly trend to an end.
Speaking on the call for dialogue with Boko Haram, the deputy governor said the issue of dialogue was not only with the state, but also the Federal Government.
According to him, some of the sect members are interested in dialogue, while others are hardliners and believe that those who do not want the dialogue are perhaps behind the latest bomb blast.Share