Following an earlier attack on Mainok Town in Borno State by Boko Haram insurgents on Friday, September 19, 2014 which resulted in the death of twenty people, the Nigerian army has launched an attack on the sect members, resulting in the death of forty-eight members of the militant group, reports say
The attack by the insurgents occurred just as traders in Mainok market – where about a dozen people were killed – were preparing to go for Friday Jumiat prayers.
A traveler, Alloy Ikechukwu from Lagos who was heading to Maiduguri told newsmen on Friday said the luxurious bus he had boarded was passing through Mainok as the insurgents invaded the market.
He said: “We boarded a luxury bus from Lagos and as soon as we arrived Mainok at exactly 1.30 p.m., we heard heavy gunshot from the western part of the market and sporadic gunshots followed,” Mr. Ikechukwu said. “Hundreds of traders and residents fled the market in confusion, running to cross the highway to the other side while vehicles passing through the town were also making attempts to flee the town. It was such confusion.Vehicles were hitting one another and the Boko Haram kept shooting.”
A police officer in Maiduguri who was also travelling through Mainok narrated his experience.
“From the sound of the first shot fired at the market, I knew there was problem because the attackers first fired Rapid Propelled Grenade (RPG) into the middle of the market before they started firing into the midst of the confused traders,” he said.
A senior army official who spoke anonymously said about twenty people were killed, but the army swiftly swooped in an salvaged the situation, killing forty eight of the insurgents.
The official said: “Due to the poor telecom network around Mainok town, troops (from 7 Division in Maiduguri) could not get the alert on time, until they (Boko Haram) had attacked and killed some of the traders – about 20 or so – and even stole money and food items from the poor traders. But as soon as the message got to us, troops arrived Mainok and tracked them towards the direction and were able to intercept them as they were taking some rest or attending to a broken down vehicle. It was another tough battle but within hours, our gallant soldiers subdued them, as we counted 48 corpses and recovered several weapons and vehicle abandoned by some few others who fled.”