2 in 24 hours * ANOTHER BOMB BLAST KILLS 14 PEOPLE IN MAIDUGURI
Barely 24 hours after a suicide bomb attack at Maiduguri abattoir that claimed 25 lives, another Improvised Explosive Device (IED) exploded yesterday at a market on Baga road, Maiduguri killing 14 people while 19 others were injured. The explosive, according to an eyewitness, Audu Isa, was planted at the entrance to the market opposite Ibrahim Taiwo Divisional Police Station and exploded at about 5.14 pm as traders and customers were rushing to beat the 7pm curfew. Baga road is also a few metres from the headquarters of the 7 Division, Nigerian Army. According to Isa, “this blast was devastating and shocking, as the explosion rocked Bolori, Ummarari, Jajeri, Federal lowcost estates and Pompomari axis, sending smoke into the air for 15 minutes, before the Nigerian Red Cross (NRC) and National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) rescue teams rushed to the scene to evacuate bodies and the injured ones.
“At the time the rescue teams reached the market, I counted 11 dismembered bodies with some of the limbs ripped off.” Hamidu Ibrahim, a member of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) that had been patrolling the Baga-Bolori-Pompomari axis of Maiduguri metropolis also said: “This explosive was hidden in a black polythene bag and planted in one of the entrances to the market and park before the suspected bomber detonated it at about 5pm. He said the rescue teams of NRC and NEMA evacuated 11 bodies with 19 injured persons to the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital and State Specialist Hospital, Maiduguri. He said some of the injured persons had burns on their backs and faces, while others died before reaching hospital. “Tuesday’s blast at the abattoir was, however, different from the one that exploded at the Baga fish market and park, because the detonator of the explosive was not sighted like the one of this afternoon that killed 11 people at the spot,” said the vigilante youth. An official of NEMA also said that the agency’s rescue team was able to evacuate 11 bodies to the hospital mortuary for identification, while 19 injured were taken to hospitals for treatment. “I cannot give you the exact number of casualties, but certainly there are some injured ones that are in critical condition,” said NEMA official. Confirming the incident yesterday, the Borno State Police Command said that unidentified number of people were killed in the market blast. A police source also said that it was difficult to give the number of casualties at press time due to the rainstorm that came after the blast.