Thirty-three persons have been killed in multiple bomb blasts which rocked Potiskum, Yobe State and N’Djamena, the capital of Chad Republic, yesterday.
While 10 people were killed in the Yobe attacks and eight injured, 23 were confirmed dead in Chad with 101 wounded.
Nigerian Pilot gathered that those killed in Yobe included vigilantes and security agents in the explosions which occurred separately yesterday afternoon.
The attacker, who had been arrested after being suspected of theft, killed eight vigilantes after detonating his explosives, while the other blast killed two people outside a bar.
According to agency reports, two suicide bombers blew themselves up outside police headquarters and an academy in the Chadian capital, killing 23 people.
Police officials in Chad confirmed that the twin attacks left 101 people wounded.
In a statement it issued yesterday, the Chadian government said that, “Boko Haram chose the wrong target. These lawless and faithless terrorists will be flushed out and neutralised wherever they are.”
It confirmed that 23 people were killed and another 101 wounded in the simultaneous bombings outside the police headquarters and police academy in N’Djamena.
The government said four “terrorists” were also killed, but did not give details. Earlier, a police official had told Agence France Presse, AFP that two suicide bombers carried out the attacks, which came as police cadets were attending a training course at the academy.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility.
The government said the situation was quickly brought under control, but the unprecedented assault on the capital prompted the creation of a “crisis cell” and vehicles with darkened windows were banned from N’Djamena.
Large numbers of members of Chad’s security forces took up positions on the streets.
An eyewitness, who simply identified himself as Isa said that the suicide bomber gained access to the office and detonated the Improvised Explosive Devices, IEDs, killing eight people on the spot including himself.
Isa said: “A young man came to our office and we insisted that anybody that we would allow to enter must be searched and when he pretended to be opening the bag, he detonated an explosive device.”
Isa added that the explosion killed one of the commanders of the vigilante group in the town.
He said: “When everyone was still shell-shocked by the attack, another explosion happened five minutes later at a drinking joint in the same vicinity.”
According to him, three persons including the bomber were killed in the explosion.
He said the bomber walked into the drinking joint, pretending to want a drink and detonated the explosive device strapped on him.
Another eyewitness claimed that at the General Hospital, Potiskum, 11 corpses were deposited in the morgue.
She also revealed that eight persons were brought to the Accident and Emergency unit of the hospital.
The first attack targeted the civilian vigilante office in the Igwanda area of the city and came after a man seen carrying laptops and other computer accessories was detained.
“We suspected he was a thief and then when he couldn’t explain how he came about the things that were found on him, we took him to our office for interrogation,” said one vigilante group member. But we didn’t know he had explosives on him. He detonated the explosives and we lost eight men, including our commander,” said the vigilante, who asked not to be named for his own safety.
A police source in Potiskum confirmed the attack. “We took eight dead bodies of the vigilante men to the hospital and the remains of the suicide bomber.”
The second blast happened moments later in the Dorawa area of Potiskum at an open air tavern and brothel that has previously been hit by the Islamists.
The same police source said a man suspected to be a bomber was chased by an angry mob and set off his explosives before he was caught. “Two people have been confirmed dead,” he added.
Confirming the report, Police Public Relations Officer in Yobe, Mr. Toyin Gbadegeshin, said that one of the bombers targeted the vigilante office, killing seven persons, while two others died in the second explosion which occurred at Dorowa Ward in the town.
“At about 12.25hrs, twin suicide bombers struck at Dorowa at the vigilante office and near Lara Filling Station, killing Ado Kwamanda and six of his men. Two people, including the bomber, died in the second attack,” he said.
This attack comes just a day after Boko Haram attacked Babangida, the headquarters of Tarmuwa Local Government Area of Yobe State, where houses were razed.
Babangida, which shares border with Damaturu, the state capital, is 50 kilometres north of Damaturu, has experienced several cases of Boko Haram invasion in the past.