No fewer than 27 persons were killed and 62 others injured during a bomb attack on Monguno, a town 135 kilometres from Maiduguri, the capital of Borno State.
It was gathered from a member of the youth vigilante group, Abba Mohammed, that the Monguno attack happened at about the same time multiple bomb blasts rocked Maiduguri on Sunday, leading to the death of 54 persons.
He said a bomb explosion from a suicide bomber hit the vegetable section of a local market at Monguno on Sunday evening, resulting in the death of no fewer than 27 persons, mostly traders.
A medical officer at the state Specialists Hospital Maiduguri who spoke anonymously, said: “Five vehicles conveyed 62 injured persons from the Monguno attack to the hospital on Monday afternoon, but we quickly asked them to go to the University Teaching Hospital because our facilities are overstretched."
A resident of Monguno, Modu Ibrahim, who accompanied some of the injured persons to Maiduguri, confirmed to THISDAY that 27 persons were killed.
“I was at the onion market after the bomb explosion to help in the rescue of people. I counted 27 dead bodies at the scene,” he said.
“We lost 27 people in the bomb blast. Our people have started burying the dead ones. But one of the injured ones we brought to Maiduguri today also died,” he added.
Also confirming the attack, the Borno State Police Commissioner, Aderemi Opadokun, in a text message, said: “Yes, at about 13.30 hours of 21/9/15, the caretaker Chairman of Monguno local government reported an IED explosion at the Monguno onion market at about 21.30 hours of 20/9/15.
“Some people died on the spot while others sustained various degrees of injuries. Injured victims were transferred to UMTH, while the dead were buried by their relations. The scene has been visited. Investigation is presently in progress.”
Monguno is the birthplace of the National Security Adviser (NSA), Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd).
Reacting to the Maiduguri bomb blasts, the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon yesterday condemned the attacks at a mosque and nearby areas conducted by suspected Boko Haram elements.
“The Secretary-General extends his sincere condolences to the families of the victims to whom he wishes a speedy recovery,” his spokesperson, Stéphane Dujarric, said at a press briefing in New York.
“The Secretary-General is deeply concerned about the continuing brutal attacks against civilians, including children,” he said. “He is also deeply concerned about the increasing number of those displaced, including some 500,000 children over the past five months, with serious humanitarian consequences.”
Mr. Ban reiterated the UN’s support to the Nigerian Government in its fight against terrorism, which should be grounded on international humanitarian, human rights and refugee law, the spokesperson added.