Gunmen Kill 20 Vigilantes in Borno
Maiduguri — Insurgents suspected to be Boko Haram members killed 20 youths of the vigilante group populalry known as Civilian JTF in separate attacks in Bama and Damasak towns of Borno State. A local official who attended a mass funeral for the victims in Bama on Monday said 14 vigilantes were killed there on Sunday, Reuters news agency reported.
A Daily Trust correspondent reported that in the Damasak incident, 6 vigilantes were killed yesterday. The victims in the Damasak attack were identified as Ismail Alhaji Bunu, 36, Malam Goni, 27; Buzu Bukar, 27; Mohammed Modu, 20; Aliyu Jibrin,30 and Bukar Bako, 20.
Local vigilante groups run by youth volunteers have been instrumental in helping the military capture Boko Haram members, but they have also made them a target for the insurgents, drawing civilians further into the conflict. Alhaji Baba Shehu Gulumba, chairman of Bama local council, told Reuters in Maiduguri that insurgents disguised as soldiers lured the youths into a trap.
“They were on guard duty when the sect members dressed in military camouflage came and told them that they were needed at a meeting nearby,” he said.
“When they had been lured away from their duty posts they were then attacked and killed.” Our correspondent gathered that five of the victims in the Damasak raid were jewelry traders and a driver who was conveying them to the town’s market.
A member of the vigilante, Kariyama Mohammed, who also went to Damasak but did not pass the night in the same house with the victims said, “We travelled together to Damasak to trade in necklace but I did not sleep in the same house with them. It was in the morning that I learn of their death.” Another resident said the assailants who were four in number shot their victims dead when they were asleep before they fled into the bush.