The already tense situation in the North was further exarcerbated in Maiduguri, Borno State when the fragile peace was shattered by a bomb blast at the busy Post Office Roundabout in Maiduguri, Borno State on Tuesday.
A lone suicide bomber, believed to be a member of the Islamist militant sect, Boko Haram, carried out the attack which eye witnesses said left no fewer than 30 people dead and about 50 others injured.
Angry youths damaged former governor Ali Modu Sheriff’s office on Kashim Imam Way before they left for the Government Reservation Area where they also torched a building belonging to him.
It was gathered that the former governor, who was still in the state as of the time the explosion occurred, was hurriedly driven to the Maiduguri Airport en route for Abuja. He was said to have been escorted by a well armed police team. Soldiers fired shots into the air to disperse the youths before cordoning off the roads around the blast site and the GRA.
Investigation, however, revealed that Improvised Explosive Devices were wired to a vehicle and detonated at the roundabout which also leads to the Monday Market, the busiest market in the troubled city.There were however conflicting reports on how the lone suicide bomber arrived and detonated IEDs close to a roadblock mounted by the military near the roundabout.
Dole, who blamed the attack on Boko Haram, said, “At about 14:13 hours on Tuesday, January 14, a Honda car laden with IEDs exploded near the Post Office area in Maiduguri metropolis. Members of the frustrated Boko Haram terrorists are suspected to be behind the bomb explosion.
However, health workers claimed that 30 bodies were deposited at different hospital mortuaries in the city. They added that 50 injured persons were also brought in.
When contacted, the Director of Defence Information, Maj.-Gen Chris Olukolade, also confirmed that security operatives had arrested a suspected insurgent in relation to the explosion. He said the suspect was already assisting a team investigating the incident.