Mustapha Ilo, Maiduguri
The death toll of the latest attack launched by suspected members of the Boko Haram sect on Kawuri village, in Borno State has risen to 85.
Armed terrorists had attacked the village last Sunday between 4:00pm-1:00am, setting houses ablaze to trap and kill residents who took to hiding while also shooting down any fleeing person on sight.
The attack came less than three days after the governor, Kashim Shettima, appealed to residents of communities living around Alau Dam in Jere Local government area, who fled their homes for fear of attack by the Boko Haram insurgents to return home.
An unidentified Imam was allegedly killed in Sunday’s attack by one of his teen students (almajiri) who unknown to him was a member of the sect, even as seven mosques were set ablaze.
Lamenting to the state governor, Kashim Shettima on Tuesday, surviving residents, most of who sustained various gunshot injuries and burns, said they had buried 83 persons as at Monday and were preparing to bury another two newly discovered corpse.
They said their attackers who stormed the village in 26 vehicles, two armoured tanks and six Army camouflaged Hilux vans, had a field day as there were no security operatives to challenge them for the hours the operation lasted, adding that 16 persons were still missing.
A councillor of Kawuri village, Dala Lawan, told journalists that about 50 persons with serious bullet and fire injuries are on admission at three different hospital in the state.
“We are still searching and burying corpses since yesterday; the first burial was 83 but more corpses are still being picked in the bushes and some with serious injuries also died. We have just found two more corpses which brings the death toll to 85 for now,” Lawan said.
Also speaking, the head of the Civilian JTF in the village, Lawan Mustapha, said their assailants seemed very familiar with the village and spoke Kanuri and Hausa fluently.
The governor expressed shock at the plight of the people and gave a donation N250,000 each to those affected and also directed the immediate rebuilding of the burnt mosques and market.