Boko Haram terrorists Wednesday killed nine people in a renewed push for Maiduguri, the Borno State capital.
Though they were successfully repelled by the military, the terrorists left in their wake destruction of two villages on the outskirts of the town, the birthplace of Boko Haram insurgency.
It was learnt from sources that nine persons were killed during the push for Maiduguri by the sect in Molai and Bukarti villages.
A resident of Molai, a village about 10 kilometres away from Maiduguri on Damboa/Biu road, Ahmed Balami, told THISDAY on phone that though the attack did not leave heavy number of casualties, there was massive loss of properties for both the residents of Molai and the military stationed in the village.
He lamented that the insurgents “attacked and destroyed power transmission station and took away the military gun truck stationed there.
“They (insurgents) killed two persons in Maibukarti village, not far away from Molai. And then, they killed two others in Molai, one of them was a mad man. “They burnt the entire Molai market and many houses before they left.”
Another source in Molai, who preferred anonymity, said the attackers, during the siege, attacked the power station and carted away the gun truck that was stationed there.
Confirming the attack to journalists yesterday, the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 7 Division of the Nigeria Army, Brig. Gen. Ibrahim Biu, said Maiduguri was never attacked as the insurgents were repelled at the outskirts of the town.
According to him, “Troops neutralised a number of the insurgents and repelled the attack.
“The insurgents came and fired some shots, but troops engaged and repelled them. Some disgruntled elements are peddling misleading information that Maiduguri is under attack. How can Maiduguri be under attack when we already repelled them?
“They attempted to infiltrate Molai village in the outskirts of Maiduguri but were immediately countered. As I speak to you now, I am standing in Molai village. Troops are combing the area in hot pursuit of the fleeing insurgents.”