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Residents panic over explosions in Maiduguri

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RESIDENTS of Maiduguri, Borno State capital, have expressed worry over the explosions that occurred in the early hours of Saturday.

The ICIR learnt that explosives went off in some areas of the state capital, destroying at least one building in 1000 Housing Estate.

During an interview with The ICIR, a resident of 777 Housing Estate in Maiduguri Temitope Isaac-David said before the explosion in the early hours of the morning ( about 6am), shootings had been going on and went on throughout the night.

“They’ve been shooting since last night. This morning at about 6.00 AM, that was when they started releasing the bombs,” she said.

She told The ICIR that she and many others within the area had remained indoors as they were yet to recover from the previous night’s events and were unsure of the security situation in the area.

“I’m still in my house, I haven’t gone out yet, I am still scared. We want to really observe and know that everywhere is calm before we go out,” she said.

Isaac-David said that residents of the area were still uncertain about those responsible for the bombings, adding that the site was close to 33 Barracks and the Air Force base.

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She said terrorists who had surrendered to the Nigerian Army were camped within the area. This, she said, had led to speculations of an attempt to rescue them by their former counterparts.

“Some people are saying it’s the military while some say it’s Boko Haram. I live very close to the Air Force base and 33 Barracks. The repentant Boko Haram are kept very close to the estate. I think they are probably trying to come and rescue their members,” she said.

Though she could not confirm any casualty from the explosion, she noted that this was not the first of such attacks in the area, as a similar rescue attempt had been pulled off about a month ago.

“I think in October or early November they did the same thing, but the military were able to calm down the situation,” she said.

Another resident of Maiduguri Esther Iyare told The ICIR that no one was hit during the explosion.

“For now, they said nobody died. The building that was affected by the bomb was empty. Nobody was occupying it at the time,” she said.

Borno State is one of the areas in Northern Nigeria that has witnessed several terror attacks, which have claimed thousands of lives and properties.

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