No fewer than 30 persons were killed, while 42 others sustained varying degrees of injuries when three suicide bombers detonated their person.borne Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) near a viewing centre in Mandarari ward of Konduga town, the headquarters of Konduga local government area of Borno state.
Konduga is about 25 kilometers away from Maiduguri, the Borno state capital and has been severally attacked by the Boko Haram insurgents, who have, however, been successfully repelled by the military each time they struck.
Confirming the latest attack, the Borno State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) on Monday said 30 persons lost their lives while 42 others were injured when three suicide bombers detonated Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) in Mandarari community.
The Director, Search and Rescue Operations of the SEMA, Alhaji Usman Kachalla, who disclosed this to news men when he visited the scene of the attack on Monday, said the incident occurred around 8 pm on Sunday.
According to him, the three suicide bombers, comprising two females and a male, detonated the IEDs in a local tea joint and film center in the community.
He said that about 17 persons died instantly during the attack while the death toll rose to 30 on Monday as a result of lack of immediate medical attention and inadequate drugs.
He lamented that his staff could not reach the spot of the attack on Sunday evening when the incident occurred, as a result of the closure of the road by the military and that the hospital in Konduga did not have enough facilities to handle the situation.
Alhaji Kachallah said “When me and my team arrived Konduga early this morning, the military prevented us from gaining access to the community to assist the victims.They told us they were given order from above not to open the road until 9 am.”
Meanwhile, Governor Babagana Umara Zulum of Borno state has visited the victims of the suicide bomb blasts and assured that government will pay all the medical bills of the injured.He also prayed for the repose of the souls of the dead and for speedy recovery for the injured.
While commending the Red Cross (ICRC) for putting up the centre for the treatment of victims of the blast, the Borno state Governor directed the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health to immediately furnish him with the requirement for expanding the centre to avoid congestion of the facilities
Briefing the governor, the Director, Rescue and Operations, Alhaji Kachalla reconfirmed that 30 people were killed, while 38 were injured and were rushed to the State Specialist Hospital. 17 of them, he said, have been discharged, while three were referred to the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital.
He restated that “the incident occurred at about 9;099 pm on Sunday. We tried to give immediate attention but we were prevented by the military until early this morning. Most of those who died were as a result of lack of prompt attention and the hospital in Konduga lacks facilities and drugs”.
Our Correspondent who visited the scene of the attacks reports that dozens of the wounded victims were seen being conveyed in pick-up vans by relations to hospitals in Maiduguri, the state capital.
A resident of the area, Abdullahi Garba, said “the suicide bombers initially wanted to attack a viewing centre but were sent away and they ended up attacking a tea vendor’s place and night market. It is unfortunate that we lost 30 people, while about 40 were injured in the attack including my junior brother who was killed.”
He said “initially, 15 people were killed instantly but due to lack of medical equipment and facilities the death toll rose to 30, over 40 others were injured,” he confirmed.