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SSS Officer's Children Killed In Their Mother’s Presence

Gunmen slaughter 3 children of SSS officer •In their mother’s presence •4 killed in Kano riot •10 others killed in Borno, Plateau

Boko Haram sect

ELEVEN persons, including three children of the same parents were yesterday killed by suspected members of the Islamic sect, Boko Haram, at Suleimanti and Lawan wards of Maiduguri.

The father of the three children is said to be a State Security Service officer.

A resident of Sulemanti ward, Audu Jubril told our correspondent that, they started hearing gunshots at about 2:00 a.m. in the area, only to come out of their houses in the morning and be greeted with the news of the killing of little children by suspected sect members.

“They burnt down the house of a retired nurse and killed three children of another man. The situation really calls for serious intervention in Suleimanti because this is not the first time something like this is happening in Suleimanti ward. We have complained several times, we need JTF around this area so that they will chase out these boys carrying guns.

Gunmen suspected to be members of Boko Haram have killed seven persons in Lawan Bukar ward of Maiduguri, the Borno state capital.

Residents of the area said that, the gunmen attacked the residents between 7:45 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. Thursday following allegations that the residents earlier arrested two members of the sect, which they handed over to the Joint Task Force Operation Restore Order, when they attacked some residents in the area.

“When the residents caught these boys and handed them over, we were told that they were killed by JTF that is why some of their friends went and organized themselves and came to attack the area this morning,” a resident told Nigerian Tribune.

Men of the JTF have since been drafted to Suleimanti and Lawan Bukar area, but when contacted for confirmation the JTF spokesman, Lieutenant Colonel Sagir Musa told our correspondent on phone that, he will send a release to the effect.

Residents of Suleimanti and Lawan Bukar wards of Maiduguri, the Borno state capital have described the killing of the 11 persons as unholy, wicked and barbaric.

A resident of suleimanti ward, Audu Jibril, told Nigerian Tribune that, it is unimaginable that in this era of civilization some people who claimed to be doing the will of Allah go round killing people simply because they belong to another faith.

“The killing of innocent children between the ages of four, seven and twelve in a manner, which for whatever reason are inhuman and barbaric,” he stated.

As people in both Barakin-Ladi and Riyom local government areas of Plateau State continue to live in fear, occasioned by frequent attacks by some unknown gunmen, three people were killed in both areas on Wednesday.

Nigerian Tribune learnt that some assailants at about 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday waylaid some natives along Sho village in Barakin-Ladi local government and shot two of them dead while others fled into the bush just as the gunmen also disappeared immediately after carrying out the act.

It was equally gathered that a similar incident occurred at Rankebot village in the neighbouring Riyom local government at about 5:30 p.m. where a farmer working on his farm was shot at close range and he died before getting to the hospital.

The Media/Information Officer of the Special Task Force in charge of security in the state, Captain Salisu Mustapha, who confirmed the two incidents to Nigerian Tribune said two suspects have been arrested, adding that the command has also commenced full investigation into the two incidents.

It is recalled that some groups of notorious gunmen in Barakin-Ladi local government area of Plateau State on Monday night opened fire on some cows, killing 12 on the spot and wounded another 12.

According to a statement issued by the Special Task Force in charge of security in the state signed by the Media/Information officer of the Force, Captain Salisu Mustapha, Commander of the STF, Major General Henry Ayoola as a result of this summoned an emergency meeting with the Chairmen of Barakin Ladi and his Jos south counterpart along with tradition rulers in the area with the aim of preventing the incident from escalating.

Two more people were again on Thursday, confirmed dead, bringing the death toll to nine, while 50 houses have been burnt in the communal clash that engulfed Agyaragu community in Obi local government area of Nasarawa State, on Wednesday.

The district head of Gidan-Rai, Zhe Meri, who was a displaced person at Agyaragu before the hostility, as a result a the similar crisis that visited his domain few weeks ago, escaped by the whiskers, shortly before the crisis.

The Administrator of Jenkwe Development Area, Mr Wuduyamba Sam Agidi, who led the state Deputy Governor, Honourable Dameshi Luka Barau and other top security chiefs in the state on an assessment tour of the troubled area, confirmed the casualty figure to the Nigerian Tribune.

The palace of the paramount ruler in the area, ‘Zhe Migili’, Dr Ayuba Agwadu, was razed by the people alleged to be militant Ombatse, while the paramount ruler escaped unhurt.

As of the time of filing this report, smoke was still bellowing from some of the affected building, as charred remains of some victims littered the area.

While speaking with newsmen shortly after the assessment, the Deputy governor, Honourable Dameshi described it as barbaric, given the level of devastation of the crisis.

“From the briefing we have got so far from the administrator and security, one cannot really ascertain the real cause of the crisis for now, but I can assure you that we would get to the root of the matter.

“We have taken stock of what has happened and immediately we return to Lafia, we are going into a security meeting to review the situation and come up with a firm decision on the next line of action to checkmate the escalation of the situation,” he added.

As of the time of filing this report, women and children were seen being evacuated in vans from the area for fear of being attacked.

The State Commissioner of Police, Mr Abayomi Akeremale, Director, State Security Service (SSS), Mr Abubakar Bubuche and Secretary to the State Government (SSS), Honourable Hamza Elayo and other government functionaries, with heavy presence of security operatives were part of the tour.

Meanwhile, heavy security operatives have been deployed to Bichi town, a kilometers of about 50 to the ancient city of Kano, over a crisis which erupted on Thursday over allegation of blasphemy of Prophet Mohammed’s name by a tailor who resided in the town, just as a source said unconfirmed number of shops, religious houses were set ablaze during the pandemonium while no fewer than four lives were lost.

This is just as the state police command restated the ban on okada from 6.00 p.m to 6.00 a.m, saying it had been discovered that motorbikes had been used to perpetrate the incessant killing of innocent people in the state.

Speaking with newsmen in Kano, on Thursday, the state Commissioner of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris, however, disclosed that normalcy had returned to the town, though security operatives, police and soldiers were still in the town to maintain law and order.

He said the tailor alleged to have uttered the blasphemy statement had been rescued and taken to a safer place.

“We have held meetings with religious and traditional leaders as well as with stakeholders in the town to speak to people on the need to allow peace to reign,” he said.

While speaking with journalists, the police boss stated that the incessant use of motorcycles to attack innocent citizens in the state had made it necessary for the state security council to convene a meeting on Monday.

It was at the meeting that imposition of ban on the use of motorcycles from 6.00 p.m to 6.00 a.m within the state was enforced, noting that it was necessary, considering the fact that criminals were using motorcycles to wreak havoc in the state.

The police boss noted that “you are all aware that almost all the incidents of killings and robberies in recent times in Kano State were carried out on motorcycles.

“We hereby call on all motorcycle users, including security operatives, to abide by the curfew, as checkpoints have been put in place across the state to check and arrest the violators.”