Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Suicide bomber kills Prof, four others in UNIMAID

A professor and four other persons were killed yesterday when a young suicide bomber detonated a bomb during the dawn (fajr) Islamic prayer at the Senior Staff aQuarters of the University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID), the Borno State capital.
The late Prof. Aliyu Usman Mani, a Professor of Veterinary Medicine, and the others, were praying when the blast occurred.

State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) Chairman Satomi Ahmed and Commissioner of Police (CP) Damian Chukwu confirmed the explosion.

Chukwu said 15 injured persons were taken to hospital, but the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said 17 were injured.

“At about 5:45 a.m., a mobile police officer who is on duty sighted a suspected suicide bomber trying to scale the fence at Gate Five.

“ Suspicious of his movement, the mobile police officer instantly gunned him down and his bomb exploded and killed him instantly.

“The second suicide bomber, a seven-year-old, detonated the explosive at the senior staff quarters mosque in the university where a professor and four persons were killed and 15 persons sustained various degrees of injuries and were rushed to the hospital,”said Chukwu.

Ahmed said: “All I can say is to appeal to the people to be vigilant and ensure proper watch because, like we have said, the insurgents are in disarray and employing any tactic to cause havoc.
“The people must be vigilant at all times,” said Satomi.

The attacks took place at two locations within the school. One happened at Gate Five with only the suicide bomber as the casualty. The other one, which occurred in an interval of five minutes at the mosque, caused the death.

NEMA spokesman Sani Datti, in a statement, said: “There were reported incidents of twin blasts at the University of Maiduguri  around 5am this morning.

“One of the suicide bombers detonated his explosion  at a mosque near Gate 1  when people were observing their early morning prayer, the second one occurred around Gate 5 of the university.

“Rescue and security officials were at scene and 17 injured  victims were evacuated to  hospital.
“Two persons  and two suicide bombers  confirmed  dead (total of four)  at the time of response,”.

Borno State Police spokesman Victor Isuku, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), in another statement, said: “At about 0515hrs of date, a police mobile force personnel on duty near Gate 4 at the back of University of Maiduguri gunned down a female suicide bomber of about 12 years old, who was trying to infiltrate the university premises,  and the IED strapped to her body exploded, killing her instantly. Shortly after that, a second explosion occurred in a mosque inside the university. Four persons, including a professor and the second suicide bomber, died while 15 persons sustained various degrees of injuries and were rushed to UMTH,”.

Vice Chancellor Prof. Abubakar  Njodi said the university would not close down in spite of the blast.
Speaking when Maj.-Gen. Lucky Irabor, the Theatre Commander of Operation Lafiya Dole of the Nigerian Army visited him, Njodi said: “I can convince the Senate, the management and the university community to close the school to save lives.

”But if we do that, we are not helping because we have to give the security our maximum support and our support is not to join them in the battle field.

“If we run away, that means there is nobody they should be fighting for. We should stay and resolve it; after all, the war is about us, western education.

”If we stay, the terrorists will be frustrated because that is their aim.

Alhaji Muhammad Tanko, the university’s Director, Public Relations, said “all exams and classes had been suspended because of the ugly incident.”

Maj.-Gen. Irabor, said: “As we have already said and will continue to say, that there is frustration in the Boko Haram camp.

”They have tried severally to bring sorrow and pain to the university and the rest of the communities and have failed.

”We, therefore, enjoin you not to be deterred. This is a clear sign that the end of Boko Haram has come.

”The people should, therefore, continue with their normal life to let the Boko Haram know they have failed.

”We should let them know that the extent of their stupidity and callousness do not have any impact on us anymore,” Gen. Irabor said.

Brig.-Gen. Victor Ezugwu, the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 7 Division of the army, said: “We are here to sympathise with you on this ugly and sad incident and we want you not to be deterred in your endeavours.”

To Gen. Ezegwu the seven-year-old bomber did not know what he was doing. “This is a boy that when you ask him to put his hand in fire, he cannot do it, talk less of detonating himself with an IED,” he said, adding:

“We want to appeal to the Muslim community not to be deterred. Same incident like this had occurred in Damboa where Muslims were jam-packed and a suicide bomber detonated his explosive.

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