As frustration with Abuja officials in the Nigerian capital grows among residents in Borno State, it appears residents and indigenes are taking matters into their own hands. The Boko Haram sect has stepped up their attacks across the state, with security forces, local police, and Nigerian military officials slow to respond, or largely absent. Never appearing at all, say a handful of sources, even in the aftermath of local attacks.
For many Borno residents, the recent visit of President Goodluck Jonathan to Borno, and his refusal to visit the town of Chibok to meet with parents of the kidnapped students, over “security concerns,” has sent the double message of fear, and inaction. Yet, the attacks by the Islamist group, spurred-on by international focus, continue with increased frequency across the state.
Now, there is a new twist to the story that has come about in recent days.
SaharaReporters has learned that villagers, and local hunters, have killed no fewer than 100 Boko Haram militants, at three different villages in Borno as of late Monday evening. Confirmation of gun battles, and counter attacks on the part of residents in small villages is difficult. Yet, the stories villagers fighting back continue to spike.
Two days ago, residents of Attagara village, in the Gwoza Local Government Area, have reportedly killed up to 7 Boko Haram members, who came to attack the village in a Sunday night raid.
Meanwhile, residents of Kimba, and Kamuyya, villages in the Biu Local Government Area, also fought off a recent attack. A source within one of those villages, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told a SaharaReporters correspondent that they’ve killed at least 28 Boko Haram members in two villages that were under attack on Monday. There were no reports of death, or injuries sustained to the residents of the two villages thus far.
Yet, Madu Ali, a villager of Kawuri who stepped forward, told a SaharaReporters correspondent via telephone, that the villagers had killed over 70 Boko Haram militants late Monday when Kawuri came under attack at nightfall.
Madu Ali, added in his discussion that, “we have made up our mind that whenever they come (s) we will surely fight them (back.”)
He further noted that, “four months ago (the Boko Haram) destroyed our properties, set our houses on fire, and (had) killed our families….. Four months ago. Yet, they came back again.” Madu Ali said that no one has seen military personnel in their area for much of the year.
These three villages were all attacked months before, SaharaReorters has learned. Recent, largely un-reported incidents of attacks since the kidnapping of the nearly 300 students in Chibok, will mark the second time that Boko Haram had attacked the villages of Kawuri, Kimba, and Kamuyya. All of the villages are located in Borno state.
What is happening in Borno now, is that while the perception of Abuja inaction continues, for some residents, including hunters, farmers and villagers, they are saying enough, and are not content to sit back, idly waiting for the next night time attack to visit them.