Boko Haram has raided an Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camp in Maiduguri, Borno State capital. The insurgents stormed Dalori 1 camp located at the outskirts of the city at about 9pm on Thursday through an opening on the perimeter fence, witnesses said.
“I was seated outside a tent when I head gunshots. Initially I thought the firing was from soldiers until I saw some boys, very young with AK 47 (rifles) approaching. I laid flat immediately but they didn’t even fire at me. They went straight into shops and tents packing foodstuffs, detergents, beverages and local spices,” eyewitness Sadiq Abubakar disclosed.
Dada Hamman whose husband was hit by bullets during the firing described the incident as unbelievable. “I can’t believe this happened,” she said and burst into tears.
Her sister was to later explain the plight of Dada. “It is sad. She lost her two sons in Bama and fled to Maiduguri. She thought this problem was over but now her husband was killed inside camp where we thought we were safe,” the woman in her mid 30s disclosed.
She said many of them fled into a nearby garden owned by the University of Maiduguri, some 500 metres away, as soon as Boko Haram arrived the camp.
Scores of IDPs told Saturday Sun the insurgents came in motorcycles and open-van tricycles popularly called Jega by the residents. “They packed a lot of foodstuffs, even livestock while some older ones among them were at the back providing cover,” a CJTF who preferred anonymity told Saturday Sun.
They said the soldiers around the area were also firing until a military jet came nearly 30 minutes later to push back the rampaging insurgents. “They packed all our foodstuffs and burnt down a few shops in the camp,” Bukar Mele, one of the IDPs at the camp said.
Rubbles of burnt tents and shops overshadowed by smokes were seen in the early hours of Friday. A big perforation on the perimeter fence like an entrance allegedly created by the military troops was visible at the back of the camp. The perforation was said to have provided an entry into and exit out of the camp for the Boko Haram on Thursday night without much resistance from the military forces.
The military authority in the state has not issued any reaction on the incident as at press time. The Dalori camp is about 2 kilometres to the business district.