Tag Archives: Nigeria

Nigeria – suicide bombers kill police in Maiduguri; quater of a million displaced bu Boko Haram

Premium Times

Boko Haram: Suicide bombers kill 10 in Maiduguri

Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau

The suicide bombers drove a car into a police van.

Two suicide bombers driving a Volkswagen saloon car, on Monday, in Maiduguri, rammed their vehicle into a police highway patrol van killing five officers and three civilians, witnesses and security officials said.

The suicide bombers, suspected to be members of the Boko Haram terrorist group, also died in the massive blast that left many pedestrians and commuters injured.

The incident occurred near Dalori Housing Estate, outside the town, along the Maiduguri-Bama highway.

The blast echoed in Maiduguri causing already agitated residents to panic in fear of yet another Boko-Haram attack.

The soldiers of the 7-Division Nigeria Army immediately cordoned off the roads leading to the scene of the blast. A joint team of soldiers and the Civilian-JTF intensified stop and search of vehicles, especially the Volkswagen Golfs which are normally used as commercial taxis.

The Borno State Police Public Relations Officer, Gideon Jubrin, a Deputy Superintendent of Police, confirmed the incident to journalists on phone.

He said five police officers attached to the federal highway patrol were killed in the suicide bombing as well as three civilians.

The attack came barely 24 hours after the Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, in a fresh video, declared a total war on residents of Maiduguri including the security operatives. Premium Times

Boko Haram crisis displaces 250,000 Nigerians in three months – NEMA

Published: March 25,2014

The Head of UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, UNOCHA, said the organisation would spend 75 million dollars on humanitarian assistance in Nigeria.

The National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, on Tuesday said that three million people were affected and a quarter of a million displaced by insurgency in the North-East between January and March.

The NEMA Director-General, Mohammad Sani-Sidi, made this known at the 7th National Humanitarian Coordination meeting organised by NEMA for donor agencies in the country in Abuja.

The Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for several attacks in the North East, particularly Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa, that has killed thousands of people since 2009. The attacks worsened in 2014 despite a state of emergency in those three states.

Mr. Sani-Sidi said NEMA in collaboration with the Red Cross and State Emergency Management Agencies in affected states, carried out a comprehensive multi-sector rapid assessment of humanitarian situation in the areas.

Represented by Zanna Mohammad, NEMA’s Director of Administration, Mr. Sani-Sidi said the assessment was carried out between March 3 and March 7.

“The assessment report findings revealed that from January to March alone, insurgency and other humanitarian challenges have affected more than three million people.

“The insurgency left scores dead and displaced more than 249,446 people who are in camps or living with host communities,” he said.

He said the meeting was to review the humanitarian situation in states affected by the state of emergency.

The director-general said the meeting was to explore avenues for further response by national and international humanitarian actors.

He said although NEMA had intervened through the provision of food and non-food items, water and medicaments, the needs of the affected population are on the increase. He solicited the support of all donor agencies in alleviating the sufferings of those affected.

“Let me use this opportunity to call on all actors local and international to share with NEMA their plans and intention for providing support to Nigerians in distress.

“This is desirable to avoid duplication of efforts, confusion and inefficiency,” he said.

Some representative of donor agencies at the meeting commended efforts being made by NEMA to provide figures on the humanitarian situation in the North-East.

The Head of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, UNOCHA, Choice Okoro, in Nigeria, said the organisation would spend 75 million dollars on humanitarian assistance in Nigeria.

She said 75 per cent of the amount would be used for humanitarian intervention in the North- East.

Ms. Okoro commended NEMA’s openness in providing information on humanitarian situations in states affected by the insurgency.

A representative of the Nigerian Red Cross Society, Soji Adeniyi, called for the sustenance of the periodic information on humanitarian situation in the affected states by NEMA.

“What is happening in the North-East is unprecedented; we have never had this kind of displacement caused by conflicts before in the country,” Mr. Adeniyi said.




Nigeria – deaths in stampede by jobseekers in Abuja stadium

Nigeria: Stampede in Abuja’s stadium kills jobseekers

A stampede among jobseekers taking a recruitment test in the national stadium in the Nigerian capital Abuja has left many people dead and injured.

A journalist for French news agency AFP said he had counted seven corpses.

The stampede came during a recruitment exercise by the immigration department. Tens of thousands had turned up to take the test, according to reports.

There is a high level of unemployment in Nigeria especially among young people. In 2011, it stood at 23.9%.

Survivor Rosemary Ogida told AFP that she could remember being picked up by three men.

“I cannot even imagine the number of people that stamped on me,” she said.



Nigeria – Jonathan finally institutes probe into missing NNPC $20bn


Nigeria orders probe into ‘missing $20bn’ of oil money

Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan (file photo) President Jonathan says the allegations are patently false


Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan has ordered a forensic audit of the state oil firm following claims that $20bn (£12bn) had gone missing.

Suspended central bank governor Lamido Sanusi caused shockwaves last month when he said that $20bn in oil revenue had not been accounted for.

Mr Jonathan’s office denied the claim and said “reputable international firms” would carry out the audit.

Nigeria is one of the world’s biggest oil producers.

However, many of its citizens still live in poverty and say they have not benefited from the country’s oil wealth.

‘Gross misconduct’

Nigeria’s oil sector is seen as notoriously opaque and corrupt, correspondents say.

Mr Sanusi was suspended last month after he told a senate committee that the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) had failed to account for $20bn of the $67bn of oil sold between January 2012 and July 2013.

The presidency said in a statement that Mr Sanusi’s suspension had “absolutely nothing” to do with his “patently untrue” allegations.

“But government is making no effort to bury them as he falsely claims,” the statement said, adding that foreign firms would carry out the audit.

Nigeria’s Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and the senate committee also called for an audit after Mr Sanusi presented his evidence to MPs.

Mr Sanusi has said he would challenge Mr Jonathan’s decision to suspend him.

Mr Jonathan’s office says he was suspended for unrelated “financial recklessness” and “gross misconduct” at the central bank.

The NNPC has denied the money is missing, saying the allegations showed “little understanding of the technicalities of the oil industry”.

Mr Sanusi is widely respected in financial circles and was named central bank governor of the year for 2010 by Banker magazine. BBC

Nigerian rmy claims over 200 Boko Haram killed in security operation


Boko Haram: Troops Kill Over 200 Insurgents In Borno

— March 9, 2014

Soldiers on Patrol

At least 210 Boko Haram terrorists have so far been killed as a combined force of Nigerian soldiers on a special operation began raid of Sambisa forest, which is the insurgents’ camp in Borno State, top security sources said.

Following the successful raid of Alagarno and Ajiri satellite camps in the eastern part of the state, the military, according to a top security officer who spoke to LEADERSHIP Sunday in confidence, have mobilised a formidable force that have commenced a tactical offensive on Sambisa.

“We cannot say uhuru for now, but we are gradually penetrating Sambisa forest and so far over 210 armed Boko Haram terrorists have died as a result of a heated gun battle between our troops and the terrorists at the peripheral part of the Sambisa,” said the source.

The troops, who were given marching orders by the presidency and the Defence Headquarters to end the Boko Haram conflict before the end of April, would not want to make mistakes this time round, he said.

LEADERSHIP Sunday gathered that villagers in some parts of Damboa local government area that shares borders with Sambisa forest have turned the area of the attack into some tourist centre as they went there to see the corpses.

The source said the attack on Sambisa was from all fronts because of the vast nature of the area which connects Borno, Yobe and Adamwa states. The ongoing operation in Sambisa forest has since forced some of the terrorists to flee into the city of Maiduguri to seek refuge. But most of them were arrested by the ever-vigilant members of the Civilian-JTF.

A top official of the Civilian-JTF in Maiduguri, Abubakar Malum, said they have so far arrested over 50 suspected Boko Haram members since last Saturday’s twin-bomb blasts.

“Most of the arrested Boko Haram suspects were caught trying to invade the town with dangerous weapons like guns and improvised explosive devices.

“We have arrested one old man near the Air Force Base with a bomb and handed him over to the military. Most of them were arrested inside town while fleeing from the bush camps because the soldiers are now raiding their hideout,” said Malum.

The renewed vigour in taking the attack to the Boko Haram camps came after the military had come under serious criticism by residents, especially the Civilian-JTF, who said the recent attacks on villagers soared because the military had been foot-dragging in raiding already identified camps of the terrorists.

Meanwhile, in Maiduguri, residents no longer enjoy the normal serenity of the night as everyone was being forced by the Civilian-JTF members in various neighbourhoods to keep vigil should some of the terrorists come attacking at night.

The military has not issued official statements to journalists in Maiduguri for some time now, a situation that has made it difficult for newsmen to confirm or deny reports. leadeship

Nigeria – 29 killed in Boko attack on Mafa in Borno

3 March 2014
Suspected militant Islamists have killed at least 29 people in an attack on a town in north-eastern Nigeria’s Borno state, a lawmaker has said.

Government troops fled when the militants raided Mafa town on Sunday night, Ahmad Zannah added.

The attack brings to about 150 the number of people killed in Borno since Friday in attacks by the militants and the military, reports say.

The Islamist group Boko Haram is waging an insurgency in Nigeria.

President Goodluck Jonathan declared a state of emergency in Borno and two other states in May, giving the military extra powers to curb the four-year insurgency.

When the attack took place, all of them ran away, along with the villagers”

Ahmad Zannah
Nigerian senator
However, Boko Haram has stepped up its violent campaign, with hardly a day going by without reports of a deadly attack by militants, says BBC Nigeria correspondent Will Ross.

Thousand of people have been killed in the conflict and hundreds of thousands have fled their homes.

‘Air Raid
Mr Zannah, a senator from Borno state, told BBC Focus on Africa that Boko Haram had warned about a week earlier that it planned to attack Mafa.

Schools were shut and most residents fled to Maiduguri city, about 45km (28 miles) away, he said.

Military reinforcements were sent to Mafa, but soldiers still lacked the firepower or numerical strength to confront the militants, Mr Zannah added.

“When the attack took place, all of them ran away, along with the villagers. There was no resistance,” he said.

Maiduguri, the birthplace of Boko Haram, has been badly affected by the conflict
Two policemen were killed by a bomb on Monday morning and fourteen soldiers were missing, Mr Zannah said.

On Saturday night, suspected Boko Haram fighters reportedly destroyed the entire village of Mainok, about 50km west of Maiduguri.

The militants attacked the village with assault rifles, rocket-propelled grenades and explosives, killing 47 people, residents said.

Earlier on Saturday, two bombs killed about 50 people in a densely populated area of Maiduguri – a city which Boko Haram has often targeted.

Borno state senator Ali Ndume told BBC Hausa that about 20 people, many of them elderly, were killed when the army launched an air raid on Daglun village on Friday night.

However, the defence ministry denied the allegation.

“The reports are believed to be part of the design by those bent on discrediting the counter-terrorist mission,” its spokesman Chris Olukoladehe is quoted by the AFP news agency as saying.

He said government forces had killed a number of Boko Haram fighters in an operation on Sunday evening, including those believed to have killed at least 29 people in an attack on a rural boarding school in Yobe state more than a week ago.

Boko Haram members suspected to have been involved in the bombings in Maiduguri have also been arrested, Mr Olukoladehe said, AFP reports.

Both the Nigerian army and Boko Haram have repeatedly been accused by rights groups of committing atrocities during the conflict in the region.


Nigeria – 85 believed dead in Maiduguri bomb blasts


Suspected Islamists kill 85 in northeast Nigeria

By Lanre Ola


People look at damage in a market area after a bomb explosion in Ajilari-Gomari near the city's airport, Maiduguri, Borno State March 2, 2014. REUTERS-Stringer
A man takes a picture of a crater after an explosion of one of two vehicles laden with explosives in Ajilari-Gomari near the city's airport, in Maiduguri March 2, 2014. REUTERS-Stringer
People gather around a crater created after an explosion of one of two vehicles laden with explosives in Ajilari-Gomari near the city's airport, in Maiduguri March 2, 2014. REUTERS-Stringer

People look at damage in a market area after a bomb explosion in Ajilari-Gomari near the city’s airport, Maiduguri, Borno State March 2, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Stringer

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (Reuters) – Suspected Islamist militants have killed at least 85 people in northeastern Nigeria, witnesses and officials said on Sunday, in a further setback to President Goodluck Jonathan’s military campaign.

Twin bomb blasts in the city of Maiduguri killed at least 46 people on Saturday evening while, around 50 km (30 miles) away, dozens of gunmen were razing a farming village, shooting dead another 39.

The attacks will heap pressure on Jonathan, whose intensified military push to end the Islamist sect Boko Haram’s four-and-a-half-year-old insurgency has been running for almost a year.

While the bloodshed has not diminished, the army had at least had some success in confining it to remote rural areas in recent months, so that the attack on a densely populated market area in Maiduguri will be seen as a setback.

Jonathan is expected to run for re-election next year in what is expected to be a close contest.

Boko Haram, which has killed thousands in its fight for an Islamic state in northern Nigeria and become the biggest threat to security in Africa’s top oil producer, is increasingly targeting the civilian population.

The attack on the village of Mainok on Saturday evening is typical of recent raids by Boko Haram as its fighters continue to target anyone they view as supporting the government’s effort to end its insurgency.

“They were shooting sporadically and throwing explosives on buildings. I counted 39 bodies this morning,” Mainok resident Mansur Buba told reporters in Maiduguri. “I fled the place because nobody is safe.”

Mustapha Musa, another resident, said the village was in ruins with every house burned to the ground.

An emergency relief official confirmed the death toll as 39 but asked not to be named because he was not authorised to speak officially.

There was global outrage last week when dozens of school children were shot or burned to death in a rural region near the northeastern city of Damaturu.

Insurgents killed more than 300 people last month, mostly civilians. Among the attacks were two in which more than 100 people were killed. In one, militants razed a village and shot panicked residents as they tried to flee.

Western governments are concerned about Nigerian groups such as Boko Haram linking up with al Qaeda-linked cells in other countries in the Sahel region, such as Mali, where France sent troops a year ago to oust Islamist militants who had seized control. Reuters

Nigeria – Boko Haram blamed for Adamawa village killings

Nigeria’s Boko Haram blamed for Adamawa killings

Suspected militant Islamists have killed at least 28 people during an assault on a town and village in north-eastern Nigeria’s Adamawa state, witnesses said.

Banks, shops and houses were also looted and burnt during the six-hour raid by militants armed with rocket-propelled grenades, they added.

A military spokesman confirmed the attacks, but did not give details.

The Islamist group Boko Haram is waging an insurgency in Nigeria.

Thousands of people have been killed since the conflict started in 2009.

On Thursday, France’s President Francois Hollande pledged support for Nigeria in its fight against Boko Haram.

“Your struggle is our struggle,” he said at a security conference in the capital, Abuja.

Witnesses told the BBC Hausa Service that a large number of fighters had launched the assault on the town of Michika, which has a population of several hundred thousand, and the nearby village of Shuwa.

Some of those killed had been shot dead while others had their throats slit, they added.

“Everyone has left the village. We’ve all run away into the bush,” a resident of Shuwa told the BBC.

“We think the military have responded and there were exchanges of fire,” he added.

Hiding in bushes
Nearly all the shops in Michika have been looted and destroyed, residents said.

A police station and two banks in the town were also raided, they added.

Boko Haram has been blamed for a spate of attacks in recent weeks
Boko Haram often targets such buildings to finance and arm its fighters, correspondents say.

It has not commented on the latest attack.

It was blamed for killing at least 29 people in an attack on Monday night on a rural boarding school in Yobe state.

President Goodluck Jonathan declared a state of emergency in Adamawa, Yobe and Borno states last year in an attempt to curb the insurgency.

His critics say the state of emergency has been ineffective, with Boko Haram stepping up attacks in the region.

Speaking at the security summit, Mr Jonathan called on countries to work together to eliminate “terrorism”.

An act of terror against one nation was an act of terror against all nations, he said.

Regional leaders, including those of Niger and Senegal, are attending the summit.

It coincides with celebrations to mark Nigeria’s centenary.

The West African state was formed following the amalgamation of the mainly Muslim north and Christian south during British colonial rule in 1914.



Nigeria – Jonathan renews call for Boko Haram to lay down arms and talk


Nigeria: Boko Haram – Again, Jonathan Begs Sect to Lay Down Arms

By Chika OtuchikerePhoto:                   Vanguard


                  Bombing continues as citizens advocate for talks with Boko Haram             

President Goodluck Jonathan on Monday renewed his call on members of the Boko Haram sect to lay down their arms and embrace the federal government amnesty plans. The president challenged the sect members to engage the Federal Government in a constructive dialogue to end the security challenges in the North-eastern part of the country.

Jonathan made the call while declaring open a 2-day international seminar on the imperatives of the observance of human rights and

international humanitarian law norms in internal security operations, organized by the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and the Office of the National Security Adviser.

Jonathan urged the sect members to come forward with their grievances, stating that the government was willing to open negotiations for an amicable end to the violence the north by the group.

Jonathan said, “We are guided by our commitments to address human rights violation by the armed forces and I want the armed forces to maintain the highest level of professionalism at all times. I wish to use this platform to appeal to the leaders of the sect to lay down their arms and negotiate with the government, if they have any grievances.”

Jonathan who noted that the seminar would ensure that security operations against insurgents conformed to the law and are guided by respect for human rights averred that though the Boko Haram sect was waging brutal attacks without respect for human rights, the military has been working assiduously to restore law and order.

The President challenged the security operatives to uphold the highest level of professionalism and respect for human rights at all times, stressing that the government is committed to observing the various international instruments on human rights to which it was a signatory.

Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mohammed Adoke in his keynote address, pointed out that the seminar was meant to ensure that the efforts to address the nation’s security challenges conform to law and are also in tandem with acceptable international standards.

He disclosed that the civil disturbances in Plateau and Kaduna States, as well as the militancy in Niger Delta and terrorists activities in the North-East geo-political zone, have been placed under preliminary analysis by the Office of the Trial Prosecutor, acting under the Article 5 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

Adoke who disclosed that 40 Boko Haram members have so far been convicted in the country, explained that the government resorted to frequent deployment of the armed forces in aid of civil authorities to combat the multifarious security challenges facing the nation, as envisaged by section 217 (2) (c) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, as amended.

Adoke said, “The Prosecutor’s report of August 5, 2013, established that the Boko Haram sect was carrying out crimes against humanity as prescribed under Article 7 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, particularly murder and persecution. The Prosecutor has since proceeded to the admissibility stage of determining whether Nigeria is ‘willing and able’ to prosecute the perpetrators of these crimes.”

The minister stated that the attacks and exchanges between Boko Haram and the security forces had attained the threshold of a non-international armed conflict and those adjudged to be combatants could be held accountable for war crimes under Article 8 (2) (c) of the Rome Statute of the ICC.

The justice minister said that allegations of human rights abuses and non-adherence to applicable rules of engagement levelled against those involved in quelling crises coupled with adverse reports from human rights advocates, have tended to put the country on the spotlight before the international community.

He said that the government would hold the armed forces and other security agencies, accountable to the highest professional and ethical standards, tasking them to protect vulnerable members of the society such as women and children.

“While the military has been effective in maintaining law and order and restoring normalcy to many crises areas across the country, experience has shown that their intervention sometimes engender negative reactions from the affected communities on account of the loss of lives and property, associated with the alleged use of excessive force,” he noted.

The National Security Adviser, NSA, Mr Dasuki Sambo in his remarks, disclosed that the military was currently in in 32 states of the country pointing out that the military was sometimes overwhelmed by the sophistication of the sect. allAfrica

Nigeria – President defends army’s role in fight against Boko Haram


Nigerian soldiers stand guard at the offices of the state-run Nigerian Television Authority in Maiduguri, Nigeria on 6 June 2013 The president replaced his top military brass in January after acknowledging serious lapses within the army

The Nigerian president has defended the army’s efforts against Islamist militants in the north, after over 200 civilians died in attacks last week.

Addressing recent criticism, President Goodluck Jonathan said the fight against Boko Haram “will improve”.

It comes after the governor of the worst affected state, Borno, called for more troops to be deployed to the area.

Boko Haram has been conducting a four-year campaign of violence to push for Islamic rule in northern Nigeria.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday, President Jonathan criticised the governor of Borno state, Kashim Shettima, who recently stated that the Boko Haram militants were better armed and more motivated than the Nigeria military.

He also defended his decision to suspend the outspoken central bank governor, Lamido Sanusi, suggesting it had nothing to do with the governor’s decision to expose corruption in the oil sector.

War of words

Mr Jonathan told reporters if the Borno state governor felt the military were not useful, he would pull them out of the state for a month. He then suggested it would become so unsafe that even the governor would not be able to stay there.

The BBC’s Will Ross in Lagos says this comment is likely to anger people who have had their lives turned upside down by the violence.

Witnesses complain that Boko Haram attacks have at times lasted for several hours without any response from the armed forces.

Governor Kashim Shettim called for reinforcements in the wake of a five-hour attack on the Nigerian border town of Bama last week. A week earlier, 106 people were killed by gunmen in a raid on the town of Izghe.

A woman from Gwoza, Borno State, displaced by the violence and unrest caused by the insurgency, weeps at a refugee camp in Mararaba Madagali, Adamawa State, on 18 February 2014. Many civilians have been displaced by the violence and unrest caused by the insurgency, such as these women at a refugee camp in Adamawa State

Speaking to the BBC on Monday, Borno state Senator Ali Ndume expressed outrage after the military forces failed to prevent a second attack on the town.

Mr Ndume said the state of emergency imposed last year by the government in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa to end the insurgency was not working.

More than 245 people have been killed this year alone by suspected Islamists.

On the suspension of the central bank governor, Mr Jonathan said Lamido Sanusi had to step aside to allow an investigation into financial malpractice at the central bank.

But many Nigerians believe the real reason Mr Sanusi was suspended was because he had ruffled feathers by alleging that the state oil company had failed to account properly for $20bn worth of oil, says the BBC’s Will Ross.

The ex-bank governor was in the midst of presenting evidence to parliament, fuelling speculation that his suspension was an attempt to silence a whistleblower.

But the president denied this in his press conference, saying Mr Sanusi’s dismissal had “nothing to do with whistleblowing.”

Map of Nigeria


Nigeria – Boko Haram kill over 50 in Borno State attac


Nigeria’s Boko Haram kill 51 in northeast attack – witnesses

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria, Wed Feb 12, 2014 (Reuters) – Gunmen from Islamist sect Boko Haram killed 51 people in an attack on a town in northeast Nigeria, witnesses said on Wednesday, in a region where President Goodluck Jonathan’s troops are struggling to contain its insurgency.

Dozens of Boko Haram fighters speeding along in trucks painted in military colours and armed with automatic weapons and explosives stormed Konduga local government area in Borno state at around 4 p.m. on Tuesday, burning houses and shooting fleeing villagers, two witnesses said.

The insurgents also took 20 young girls from a local college hostage, a teacher said. The military confirmed the attack took place. It was still assessing the number of casualties.

“It is barbaric and unfortunate,” Borno State Governor Kashim Shettima said when he visited the town on Wednesday.

“About 60 to 70 percent of the town has been burnt down but we are willing to rebuild it,” he added, pledging to spend 100 million naira ($609,000) on emergency materials.

Boko Haram, which wants to impose sharia law on a country split roughly equally between Christians and Muslims, has killed thousands over the past four and a half years and is considered the biggest security risk in Africa’s top oil exporter and second largest economy after South Africa. ($1 = 164.2 naira)