Following the several cases of suicide bomb attacks that hit the Borno State capital, Maiduguri and its environs on Sunday night, the Nigerian military is warning residents in the state to refrain from opening their doors to strangers.
Reports have it that the new strategy of the suicide bombers was to knock on peoples’ doors and immediately the doors is opened; they grab the person and detonate the explosives wrapped around them.
This recent and scary development has reportedly spread palpable fear among citizens of Maiduguri.
In a press release by Mustapha Anka, the Deputy Director Army Public Relations, 7 Division of the Nigerian Army, Maiduguri, the general public was warned about “the recent trend used by desperate remnants of Boko Haram Terrorists (BHT).”
Anka stated: “Recently, two female suicide bombers knocked at the door of one Bulama and Usman about 200 meters apart in Kalari general area of Maiduguri.
“The daughter of the Bulama opened the door, while the Usman himself opened his own door immediately the suicide bombers detonated their suicide vest, in the process killing the unsuspecting little girl (and) Usman including the two female suicide bombers.”
The army spokesman stressed that “security is a collective responsibility” and as such people should “be cautious and weary of strange persons knocking at their doors. The public is to engage in neighborhood watch,” Anka added.
He also advised the people to report any “Suspicious movement of persons to security agents without any delay”.
“The public is once again reminded that curfew is still enforced by 10pm daily, any defaulter will be prosecuted accordingly,” he said.
At the last count, eight deaths were recorded in Maiduguri and environs on Sunday night as a result of suicide bomb attacks.
Borno State Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, Victor Isuku, said that in the first of the two attacks, three of the dead were male suicide bombers who were equally armed, as well as a member of the youth vigilante group who tried to prevent them from the invading the town.
Isuku stated that the second attack – apparently the same one referred to by the army –took place in a highly populated part of the town known as Kaleri, as two female suicide bombers detonated the explosive strapped on them leading to the death of two other persons.
“At about 2020 hours of yesterday (Sunday), three male suicide bombers shot sporadically and attempted to infiltrate Maiduguri via Garki Muna village close to a military checkpoint.
“The IED strapped to their bodies exploded killing all of them, and a civilian JTF.
“Two AK 47 rifles were recovered, while one was completely destroyed as a result of the explosion.
“Then about 2230hrs same date, there were two suicide bombers attack at Kaleri area of Gwange. Four persons including two female suicide bombers died in the explosion.”
The police spokesman added that both scenes have been swept and rendered safe for public access by police operatives early on Monday and “Normalcy has since returned to these areas.”