Aug. 1, 2014
by Hamza Idris
There is a widespread fear among residents in Borno and Yobe States that Boko Haram insurgents may soon cut them off from the rest of the country following increased onslaught on communities and bridges.
A top security source, who lamented the wave of attacks on bridges in parts of the northeast said troops need equipment to take the fight to the Boko Haram in their hideouts.
“In war situation, blowing off bridges is simply to deter your enemy from getting close to you and that is exactly what the Boko Haram terrorists are doing. They simply want to prevent reinforcement and logistics supply,” he said.
On Tuesday, the insurgents destroyed the Katarko Bridge in Gujba local government of Yobe State which linked dozens of communities with southern part of Borno and Adamawa States.
Mohammed Umar, a resident of Potiskum told our correspondent that the assailants had made attempt to blow up two major bridges in Potiskum. “If they had succeeded, they would have sealed up the major road that leads to Damaturu and Maiduguri from Abuja and other major cities in Nigeria. They would have also closed the road that links Potiskum with Azare in Bauchi State, Jigawa and Kano States,” he said.
About three days ago, the Boko Haram fighters deto-nated an explosive that destroyed a bridge near Gamboru-Ngala that links Nigeria and Cameroon. The incident was the second in less than four month. In May, the insurgents had destroyed the same bridge after a violent attack in Gamboru border town where they killed over 300 people and destroyed the biggest market in the area.
For now, dozens of heavy duty trucks plying the Cameroon-Nigeria highway along Gamboru-Ngala Local Government conveying commodities like foodstuff and building materials can no longer do so. Two weeks ago, the insurgents destroyed the Mandahuma Bridge along Damboa-Biu- Gombe road.
Following the destruction of the bridge, only light vehicles are plying the road. About two month ago, the insurgents also destroyed the Bulajilum Bridge along Gwoza-Mubi road in southern part of Borno State.
“Unless the federal government takes urgent action, the insurgents would one day storm Damaturu and Maiduguri because they have already sacked most of the villages leading to the two major cities,” Barrister Ali Abubakar, a legal practitioner, said.