Following the dislodgement of Boko Haram camps in some parts of Borno State by troops which had forced many of the terrorists to scavenge for food from villagers, the terrorists have resorted to armed robbery thereby robbing innocent civilians and killing three passengers after collecting unspecified amount of cash and food items from their victims along Bama- Banki road.
This is even as intelligence information available to the newly established Headquarters of 7 Division, Nigerian Army, Maiduguri indicated that the terrorists have written threat letters to Dikwa Market/Traders demanding N1 million to enable them purchase food items and other logistical requirement or be ready to face deadly attacks.
These were contained in a press statement emailed to journalists yesterday by the Acting Spokesman of the 7 Div, Nigerian Army, Lieutenant Colonel Sagir Musa in Maiduguri, the state capital.
Sagir in the statement said, “At about 11:35 hours on 13th September, 2013, some troops of Banki Forward Operating Base (BFOB) on a mission of 202 Battalion Bama, on their way back to Banki, a border town with Cameroun Republic encountered some Boko Haram terrorists along Bama-Banki road carrying out armed robbery activities on innocent traders and travelers.
The terrorists had killed 3 passengers and collected unspecified amount of cash and food items during the robbery.
“Consequently, several terrorists also lost their lives during the chanced encounter with the troops. Similarly, intelligence available to the 7 Division indicated that in desperation to survive, the Boko Haram terrorists have written a letter to Dikwa Market/Traders demanding N1 million to enable them purchase food items and other logistical requirements or be ready to face their wrath”. Sagir stated in the statement.
Meanwhile, the sect’s insurgency has been identified as the factor responsible for the recent rise in the cases of poliomyelitis in Borno State.
The state, with 14 cases, the highest in the country, according to the Borno State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Salma Anas-Kolo was impeded in the fight against polio as a result of insecurity in many parts of the state which made it hard for health workers to immunize children in the state.
Anas-Kolo disclosed yesterday at a sensitization programme for traditional leaders in the state that Borno has 14 cases of polio out of the nation’s 37 and the global 44 cases.
She said that the sensitization programme became imperative in order to meet the 2014 World Health Organisation (WHO) target of freeing the globe of polio.
The commissioner, who explained that Maiduguri was picked for the kick off of the sensitization programme because it recorded the highest cases of six in the state with the neighbouring council having four cases, said it was not all a sad story as the incidences could have been higher but for the dedication of health workers that withstood the insecurity and went to some areas to get children immunized.
The Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar Ibn Garbai Al-Amin Elkanemi, who hosted the sensitization programme at his palace, called on his subjects to allow their children from 0-5 years to take immunization vaccine against the five killer diseases.
Read more: Nigerian Eye