Boko Haram insurgents are reportedly setting houses on fire in Maiduguri, Borno State, as troops of the ‘Operation Lafiya Dole’ battle to push them out of the city centre.
Terrified residents report heavy gunshots and sounds of explosions in different parts of the city, especially around the Jiddari Polo area.
The insurgents were said to have infiltrated the Molai and Jiddari areas of the state capital at about 7pm and began shooting sporadically before the troops moved in and engaged them in a gun battle.
A resident who spoke to Ripples Nigeria, said residents are fleeing in different directions, scampering for safety amid the confusion in the city.
“We are in a state of war as Boko Haram are currently engaging soldiers in a gun battle.
“There is confusion everywhere and residents of Jiddari and Molai are fleeing for their safety.
“We heard about three loud explosions while heavy shooting is ongoing now. We are running in every direction as no one knows where is safe.
“People are fleeing their homes and running towards Damboa and old GRA which is relatively safe. Please pray for us,” the resident pleaded.
Another resident said many people are currently trapped as a result of the chaotic situation.
“I am currently trapped. I can’t go home now. Many others are also trapped. There are sounds of gunshots from everywhere,” he said.
It was gathered that the insurgents struck when Muslim faithful were about to break their Ramadan fast but for the timely arrival of troops, things could have gotten out of hand.
Calls to the state police spokesman, DSP Edet Okon to get a situation report on the incident were not picked as at the time of filing this report.
By: Isaac Dachen
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