Sharing is caring!Facebook0Twitter0Google+0Pinterest0At least 6,900 people have fled Bama, a town in Borno State that Nigerian soldiers liberated near...
At least 6,900 people have fled Bama, a town in Borno State that Nigerian soldiers liberated nearly a week ago from Islamist insurgent group, Boko Haram.
“Over 6,900 civilians from Bama have moved to Maiduguri. The state government facilitated their evacuation and movement to Maiduguri. This [evacuation] has been occurring since last weekend,” said an official of the Borno State government. He added that two camps had been created for the evacuees to enable soldiers to interrogate them before their reintegration back to their original homes. The official stated that the interrogations are part of a process of gathering intelligence about the insurgents and their atrocities in the areas they seized last year.
An official of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) said their officers have visited the camps numerous times to determine the number of refugees, assess their needs, and make arrangements to provide immediately needed first aid and other materials.
A military source said Nigerian troops still had a lot of work to do before the recently recaptured town of Bama would be ready and fit for habitation. “Our engineers are there. We are yet to complete the mop up operation. And we are still removing hundreds of corpses that litter the streets of Bama and some wells,” said the source.
Bama is the second largest town in Borno State. Located in the central part of the state, the town is about 38 miles from the state capital of Maiduguri. Boko Haram had captured the town in September 2014. Some of the residents who arrived in Maiduguri earlier this week recounted their horrific experiences under Boko Haram for six months.
“We thank God for sparing some of us,” said one evacuated resident, a widow who gave her name as Kulu Mali. She added, “There was no water, no hospital, no light. Even to get one meal in a day was a problem. Most of our husbands have been killed, especially strong ones and youths. We were kept in Boko Haram prison and many of us were locked in different rooms.”