Update: Gov Zulum Visits Damasak,  Says 18 Killed, 21 Injured by Boko Haram

*An aerial view of Borno State
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*Donates operational vehicles to Army
By Sam Kayode
Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Zulum, has confirmed that 18 persons lost their lives in the attack of Damasak by Boko Haram while 21 others had injuries which are being treated now in various hospitals.
The Governor was in the strategic town of Damasak, headquarters of Mobbar council area, from Thursday to Friday, after the town was attacked.
He was accompanied by Senator Abubakar Kyari representing Borno north, who hails from Damasak, and some officials of Government.
Senator Abubakar Kyari lost his residence to the last attack because the insurgents burnt it down completely during the unfortunate attack when they came in desperate to pin the town down.
As part of measures, to ameliorate the situation for troops on ground, zulum held an operational meeting with soldiers and other security forces after which he presented 12 security vehicles which included an armoured personnel carrier (APC) and 11 patrol vehicles, to strengthen their vigilance over the area.
Damasak is located in the fringes of Lake Chad, and it shares a border with communities in Niger Republic like Diffa which has always given solace to IDPs from Nigeria.
The town used to be a big time producer and exporter of vegetables to target markets within Nigeria, Niger Republic and other neighboring countries around the Lake Chad.
Boko Haram had occupied Damasak in 2014 as one of their caliphates, and the insurgents seem interested in the town, apparently for strategic access to raising funds through agriculture and for land routes to Niger Republic.
During his stay in Damasak, Zulum had interactions with soldiers and other forces involved in counter insurgency operations encouraging them on how to remain resolute in keeping the town once and for all.
The Governor, who interacted with residents, empathized with them and assessed destructions caused by insurgents in the town.
A statement from the Government House noted that thousands of residents who had fled to border communities in Niger republic returned on Friday to interact with the governor and his team who came to commiserate with them.
The insurgents attacked the town with three gun-trucks, making Tuesday’s attack on Damasak the sixth in two weeks, by the Boko Haram/ISWP groups, residents recalled.
Zulum assured of robust measures being put in place to avert future attacks on Damasak town by the insurgents.
The Governor directed the strengthening of agricultural activities in Damasak, and he assessed a rice farm which his administration facilitates, to enhance food security.
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