Gunmen suspected to be members of the Boko Haram sect have taken over the Maiduguri-Dikwa-Gamboru Ngala road. The attackers are allegedly collecting money and confiscating goods.
Our correspondent reports that as a result of incessant attacks, only few vehicles now ply the 186 kilometers road that links Maiduguri and Gamboru-Ngala, a border town between Nigeria and Cameroon.
Drivers at the Gamboru Motor Park in Maiduguri said travelling along the route in now a risky affair.
“Only a few of us are now plying the road. Many of our colleagues have changed routes because of spate of attacks,” Modu Ari, a driver said.
The Majority Leader in the Borno State House of Assembly, Idrissa Jidda said Boko Haram insurgents have taken over the road.
“The insurgents have had absolute control of the road in the past one month. No day passes without an attack along the Maiduguri-Dikwa-Gamboru road and in most cases, innocent people are killed,” he said.
According to him, the insurgents stop vehicles at various points and forcefully collect money from passengers.
“In most cases, they carefully select some passengers and promptly execute them. They also kidnap girls at will and sometimes forcefully snatch vehicles that are loaded with assorted food items,” he said.
Jidda, who represents Ngala in the state House of Assembly lamented that his people are in disarray.
“Attacks are now rampant in Gamboru and Ngala to the extent that most of our people have fled to safer places like Maiduguri, while many others have crossed over to Cameroon. We really need the intervention of the federal government. For now, only the Maiduguri-Damaturu-Kano road is safe,” he said.
With the taking over of Damboa town, travellers say the Maiduguri-Biu-Gombe road is also now a no-go area while people moving from Maiduguri to Gwoza through Bama are also prone to attacks.
Meanwhile, it was gathered that in the early hours of Friday, some insurgents stormed Ngala town where they abducted the wife and two children of a politician, Zaraye Mala Sheriff. Sources said Zaraye Mala Sheriff is a councillor in the area and a cousin of former Governor Ali Modu Sheriff. The insurgents have also kidnapped two prominent politicians in the area, Alhaji Annur Mohammed and Liman Alhaji Hussaini, witnesses said.
“The insurgents stormed the house of the councillor around 12:30am on Friday and asked the wife about her husband. They also asked her for the money he kept at home but she kept quiet. Luckily enough, Zaraye was at the other side of the house and when he heard the conversation, he fled,” a source from Ngala said.
He said angered by her silence and the absence of their target, the insurgents took away the councillor’s wife and two of her children.
“Up till now, nothing has been heard of the woman and her kids. We have not heard anything about the two businessmen either,” he said. (Daily Trust)