A young female suicide bomber Tuesday killed at least six people and injured dozens outside the main bus station in Damaturu capital city of Yobe State, witnesses and an official said.
No group or individual has claimed responsibility but Boko Haram Islamists have in the past months used young women to carry out bloody suicide attacks in the restive northeast of the country.
The Spokesman for the Police in the State, Toyin Gbadegesin confirmed the explosion. He said 42 others are receiving treatment.
Mr Gbedegesin explained that the first explosion, carried out by a female suicide bomber, occurred at about 7:30am. The suicide bomber detonated the explosive device close to a vehicle at the Central Motor Park, killing five persons and herself, he said.
The second explosion was detonated by a male suicide bomber who was attempting to take a commercial vehicle when the explosion went off, killing just the suicide bomber.
“A young girl came around at 7:00 am (0600 GMT) and wanted to enter the bus station. She was denied entry because she refused to be searched by the security guards at the entrance,” a witness, Sani Dankamasho, told AFP.
A spokesman of the government of Yobe state, whose capital is Damaturu, confirmed the attack but gave a death toll of five.
“There was a suicide bombing in Damaturu…this morning where five people were killed from the explosion with more than 20 other victims injured,” Abdulahhi Bego said in a statement.
“The dead have been evacuated to a mortuary while the injured victims are currently being attended to by health and emergency workers,” the statement said.
Accoding to Dankamasho, the girl “stepped out of the park. A private taxi then drove out of the park. As soon as the car came close, she detonated the explosive. Six people in the car were killed. She was also killed,” he said.
A journalist working for a major private newspaper in Damaturu, who arrived at the scene shortly after the blast, also confirmed the death toll of six.
“Six people were killed as a result of the blast, all from the car. The bomber was also killed,” said the reporter, who demanded anonymity.
Boko Haram has stepped up attacks in three states in its northeastern heartland since President Muhammadu Buhari came to power on May 29, vowing to crush the group.
The Islamists have also carried out deadly ambushes across Nigeria’s borders and in recent weeks suicide bombers, many of them women, have staged several attacks in Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad.