No fewer than 17 girls have been kidnapped in a fresh attack by Boko Haram insurgents in Pemi village, Chibok Local Government Area of Borno State.
Daily Trust reported that the attack occurred on Thursday, causing many villagers to flee. Bitrus Yohanna, an eyewitness, noted that the attack was targeted at the leader of the vigilantes in Chibok community over his group’s resistance to terrorism in the past.
“It was a sad day for us in Pemi. The insurgents came in a large number and started raining bullets from different angles. They captured our vigilante commander and slit his throat. Many houses were burnt down, including an EYN Church,” Yohanna was quoted to have said.
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According to Ba’ana Musa, a vigilante who survived the attack, 17 girls were whisked away by the insurgents.
“They came in the night and many villagers ran into the bush, while 8 women among those abducted later escaped and returned to the village around 11 am today,” Musa said.
“But we are deeply worried over missing young girls. As we speak, not less than 17 young girls are with them.”
In 2014, Boko Haram invaded the Government Secondary School, Chibok, kidnapping 276 girls. After several dialogues, some of which were facilitated by peace advocates, about 100 were recovered at different times.
The government has not been able to account for the whereabouts of other victims to date.
Following incessant attacks by terror groups in the northern part of the country, local vigilantes stepped in to protect vulnerable residents. But many of them have fallen victims to terrorist attacks.
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In early January, around 200 people were killed in Zamfara State as a result of murderous retaliations by armed bandits following military air strikes at their hiding places. Although the government claimed just about 60 people died in the state, residents said the figure was higher by a margin, noting that most of those killed were vigilante members.
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