By Abraham Olatokunbo
It was a bloody weekend in Borno State, as 14 persons were confirmed killed and 24 others injured in a suicide bomb attack on a facility housing newly returned internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Dikwa town, eastern axis of Maiduguri.
The head of the rapid response team of the Borno State Emergency Management Agency (BOSEMA), Bello Dambatta, said a female suicide bomber on Friday night, after detonating an explosive device on her, caused the death of 14 persons and injuries to 24 others.
He said the suicide bomber penetrated a building housing returnees in Dikwa, east of Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State says, detonating the explosive leading to the massive casualties.
Dambatta, said the suicide bombers sneaked into the building close to the 20 housing estate around 8:30pm and detonated the explosives strapped on her.
He said: “We have so far evacuated 38 victims comprising, 14 deads and 24 injured and brought them to the State Specialists Hospital, Maiduguri.”
Ali Ibrahim, a nurse with the State Specialists Hospital, who also confirmed the incident, said: “The victims of the Dikwa attack have been brought into our medical facility.
“We received victims of Dikwa bomb blast this morning (Saturday), there were 14 brought in dead and 24 injured who are presently receiving treatment”, Ibrahim further added.
Babagana Musa, a youth volunteer who escorted the victims to Maiduguri from Dikwa says communication challenges affected the immediacy of responding to the distress call and the fear of the unknown especially, at night, made the security operatives decide that the victims be taken out in the morning.
Musa lamented that: “There is no network in Dikwa that was why we could not communicate on time.”
Mamman Musa who was at the Maiduguri hospital to check on the injured, said: “There are no camps in Dikwa town as almost all returnees are in homes so, this incident comes as a very surprising thing to us.”
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Army through Colonel Clement Nwachukwu, its Deputy Director, Army Public Relations, confirmed the Dikwa attack to journalists.
He said: “Yes, there was a suicide attack on Dikwa town and seven people died while six were injured”.