Suspected members of the outlawed Boko Haram sect backed by foreign mercenaries have attacked Damboa in Borno State killing 11 persons.
It was gathered in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital Friday that the Arab-speaking mercenaries, believed to be Chadians stormed the already deserted Damboa on Thursday night laying siege on the town before launching a massive attack. Speaking on the attack to journalists in Maiduguri yesterday, a top security source who pleaded anonymity because he was not authorized to speak confirmed the incident, claiming 11 civilians lost their lives.
“More troops have been dispatched to the area to confront the insurgents. We gathered that they sneaked out of Damboa towards the bush part leading into Yobe and Gombe States. For sure, they will not escape,” he said. Sources revealed to journalists that the insurgents during the attack also destroyed more than half of the business premises and shops in the village even though they reportedly faced stiff resistance from Borno youth volunteer vigilante groups (civilian JTF)who also killed one of the insurgents, injured many and captured one alive.
A resident of Damboa who was compelled to flee the town to Maiduguri said the assailants, numbering about 50 attacked the town in a convoy of nine Golf salon cars and motorcycles. He said there was heavy gunfire from the insurgents who also targeted police and military formations, which forced the residents to vacate their houses and to nearby farms and bushes.
“The attackers arrived Damboa around 8pm and laid siege till around 12am. They divided themselves into three groups. One of the groups confronted the police, the other confronted the military and the third group waylaid the civilian population and burnt many houses,” the fleeing resident said.
He added that: “The good news is that the youth vigilantes defied the superior power of the attackers because they confronted them squarely. Though what the youth had were daggers, knives and machetes, but they were well charmed up as the gun bullets could not penetrate most of them.”
Another witness said there are aliens among the attackers. “They spoke Arabic fluently and they came with sophisticated guns and improvised explosive devices (IEDs). They threw many of the explosives into shops and buildings,” he said. Member representing Damboa in the Borno State House of Assembly, Hon. Ayamu Lawan Gwasha, told journalists in Maiduguri yesterday that his people “are under siege”.were also alerted. I think this has helped in reducing the magnitude of the attack,” he said. Spokesman of the Joint Task Force (JTF), Lt Colonel Sagir Musa could not however be reached for comment as at the time of filing this report last night.