More facts have emerged on the pre-dawn attack launched by members of the Boko Haram militants in Damaturu, the capital of Yobe State on Monday.
The insurgents who entered the town from Gujpa road had had razed and destroyed a part of the Yobe State University where they sent students fleeing into the bush.
They also torched the headquarters of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), along with some public buildings along Gujba road before advancing to the Yobe State Government House situated at the heart of the town.
The insurgents forced their way into the Yobe State Government House before they were repelled by soldiers.
The governor Ibrahim Gaidam was in Abuja at the time of the attack, but security agents including JTF and SSS operatives protecting the house sprang to action.
According to a security source, the insurgents gained access to the house through the rear gate.
“Actually they entered the government house up to WAWA hall, but we were able to overcome them with the help of an air force helicopter that killed many of them,” he said.
A resident said the attackers started the dawn attack with ambush on policemen at their mobile base around 4:45 am.
The attackers also overran the Central A Division Police station which had repelled Boko Haram attacks in the past.
“The insurgents took over A division situated at the central round-about, entered the government house. They however faced serious resistance when they attempted the presidential lodge (the JTF headquarters in Damaturu),” he said.
He said though the attackers had succeeded in capturing many security posts, troops eventually succeeded in retaking the areas with the help of fighter jets.
He said that the insurgents, who launched their attacks from Gujba road, have attempted attacking the JTF headquarters but were repelled.
He added that dozens of the insurgents were killed, but this could not be independently verified.
24-hour curfew imposed
Yobe state police commissioner, Mr Marcus Danladi, confirmed the attack but said he could not give further details.