Damaturu the Yobe State capital, again came under heavy fire on Sunday morning, when suspected members of the Jam’atul Ahlis Sunnah Lidda’awati Wal-Jihad, otherwise known as Boko Haram attacked a school and prison in the city.
According to reports, the assailants attacked the prison and freed many prisoners also left a prison warder in critical condition and is receiving treatment at a hospital within the state capital.
Also, a resident told Nigerian Tribune that it was rumoured that the Emir of Damaturu, Alhaji Shehu Hashimi Ibn Umar, had fled the city following his alleged sponsorship of the deadly sect’s activities in the state.
But while speaking, the Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Toyin Gbadegesin, told Nigerian Tribune that the allegation that the emir was involved in the sponsorship of the sects activities in Damaturu was baseless and that the emir did not in anyway flee the city as claimed by mischief makers.
According to ASP Gbadegesin, majority of the attackers lived in an area called Pompomari, which is located behind the emir’s palace, as such mischief makers might be cashing in on the location of the emir’s palace to spread rumour.
While confirming the attack, ASP Gbadegesin told Nigerian Tribune that, “A prison and a school were attacked this morning by the Boko Haram sect, freeing the prisoners. In the process, one of the prisoners was killed while a prison officer was injured.”
He, however, said that the situation was under control as security had been put in place to ensure the protection of lives and properties of the people.
Meanwhile, the sect has said that it is not behind an alleged attempt to bomb a mosque in Kano, as it is a group of Muslim fighters, which must ensure the enthronement of a Muslim state, as such cannot in any way destroy any place of worship of the Muslims.
The spokesman of the sect, Abul Qaqa, said: “In respect of what we heard in the media yesterday [Friday] that some people attempted to detonate a bomb in a Juma’at mosque in Kano, this movement Jama’atu Ahlissunnah Lidda’awati Wal-Jihad hereby dissociates itself from this act. We are fully aware of this kind of conspiracy by the SSS, following a similar pattern of their counterparts in other countries to tarnish the image and reputation of Islamic fighters. They will not succeed, God willing.”
Qaqa, in a statement issued to newsmen in Maiduguri, on Saturday, also argued that “everyone knows that we are waging Jihad to restore the supremacy of Islam, which is why we are labelled ‘Muslim fundamentalists.’ How on earth can we then attempt to destroy a Muslim place of worship? This is, therefore, a conspiracy by those that are averse to the enthronement of an Islamic state, and they will not succeed by God’s grace.
“We also wish to express our happiness over the martyrdom Allah has blessed our brother, Habibu Bama, with.
We pray God accept his martyrdom. Besides, death in the battle front is the ultimate aim of every devout Muslim.
“We are still calling the attention of media houses. As it is well known to them, we are trying our utmost to avoid quarrel with them but still some of them have failed to understand us. We placed one condition to media houses, and that condition is that any media outfit that knows that it cannot objectively disseminate any statement we issue out or knows that it can’t entirely carry it, then it should not carry any statement from the government even if it is from Goodluck Jonathan. Otherwise it should blame itself for whatever follows.”
Also reacting, the state Commissioner of Police, Patrick Egbuniwe, said the sect also succeeded in taking away their members who were injured during the confrontation with policemen and men of the Joint Task Force (JTF).
“There was an attack on the Yobe prison this morning. The Boko Haram sect attacked the prison through the emir palace. Forty inmates escaped. They attacked with rifles.
“The police and the Joint Task Force confronted them and the Boko Haram members that were shot were carried away by the sect,” Egbuniwe said.
The police boss confirmed that some policemen were injured during the confrontation with the Boko Haram members.