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Boko Haram: Borno residents carry dane guns for self-protection 'Terrorists burn telecoms masts, attack Mirga

Published by Tribune on Thu, 28 Aug 2014

FOLLOWING the incessant attacks by the Boko Haram and the capture of Damboa, Gwoza and recently Ngamboru Ngala and Bank area by the insurgents, residents of Maiduguri now carry locally-made guns freely to protect themselves.The situation is not made any easier due to the raging insurgency, which had led to the displacement of thousands from rural communities to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.Maiduguri, the hot bed of the insurgency, was once a peaceful city, but it is now a different ball game altogether, as youths were seen openly displaying locally-made firearms.Nigerian Tribune gathered that the creation of the civilian Joint Task Force (JTF), a vigilante group, comprising of young men, who volunteered to protect communities, had further compounded the matter, as they were are seen all over the city, carrying locally-made guns.Being wary of the imminently explosive situation of things and the need to protect their lives, they argued that it had become necessary to be fully armed at all times.According to them, the Boko Haram members were too deadly to be taken for granted.Speaking with a community leader, Mohammed Ali, who was also seen also carrying gun, he said it became necessary given the situation the people found themselves.When asked how he got his gun, he said 'we reached an agreement to purchase these guns and we ordered for them from Damboa. I bought this gun for N8,000.'The government promised to provide each of us with one, but we have to undergo screening before they make the final selection to ascertain those of us with unquestionable character to give it to,' he explained.Nigerian Tribune also gathered that these brave young men had been able to maintain peace and normalcy within the city of Maiduguri for sometime now.Meanwhile, reports from Biu Local Government Council of the troubled Borno State has it that the insurgents, who attacked Mirga town Tuesday night, burnt all communication masts in the area and also snatched a jeep.The Toyota Landcruiser, belonging to a All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain, Alhaji Modu Kakas, was snatched at gunpoint, but the attackers did not kill anyone.An indigene of Mirga, who resides in Gombe, told the Nigerian Tribune that he was happy that no life was lost during the attack.'When these people attacked a place, they left mark of death.'Alhamdullilahi! They came and did not touch anyone. I have my aged parents, my brothers, sisters and infact, my families there. I was not myself throughout last night, because I could not get through to anyone, as telecoms masts were burnt, but we thank Allah, our people are safe,' he added.
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