6 March 2013

Nigeria: DPO, Nine Others Killed As Boko Haram Members Torch Police Station, Bank

Photo: Vanguard
Boko Haram

Maiguduri — BARELY 17 hours after the assassination of Mobile Police Training Camp, MPTC, commandant and a traditional ruler, gunmen suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect attacked the Gwoza Divisional Police Station and Mainstreet Bank, killing the Divisional Police Officer, DPO, Abubakar Digire Ahamdu, his deputy; and eight civilians caught up in the crossfire on Monday.

Gwoza Local Government Area of Borno State is a border town with Cameroun; and 135 kilometres south-east of Maiduguri, the state capital and epicenter of activities of the Islamist sect group.

The gunmen, according to residents who do not want their names mentioned for security reasons told Vanguard that the attackers used Improvised Explosive Devices, IEDs, and petrol-bombs in torching the police station and the bank, before carting away undisclosed amount of money from the bank some 750 metres away from the torched station.

Narrating the incident, a source said: "We were about going to bed when we heard multiple explosions and gunshots at the divisional police station on market road. The dogs started barking, while the few people remaining at the main junction of Maiduguri-Mubi road; ran for safety, as the gunmen exchanged gunfire with the policemen at the station for over two hours.

"Twenty minutes after, I heard another explosion at the Mainstreet Bank premises; followed by sporadic gunshots that lasted for another half an hour. My neighbours hurriedly shut their doors, because the gunmen could burst into their houses."

Another source from the Gwoza GeneralHospital also told newsmen that the bodies of the DPO and seven others were brought in by the police in two Hilux patrol vehicles for identification.

He further disclosed that the gunmen got into the bank, after dragging the bank manager from his house at gunpoint to its doors, before carting away undisclosed sums of money from the strong room and torching it at about 10.25pm.

Another resident said that their children and wives could not sleep, as the gunshots continued into the early hours of Tuesday.

"The whole area covering Gwoza Wakane and the residential north flank of Market road were scary with sporadic gunshots that lasted for over four hours. This is the first time in Gwoza we are having this type of multiple attacks by Boko Haram gunmen", said residents.

The Borno State Police Command spokesman, Gideon Jibrin, yesterday confirmed the incident, adding that there have been no arrest made, as investigation has commenced.

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