Three soldiers were killed and six others injured in a raid by Boko Haram, on Magumeri, in Borno State, last Saturday.
Boko Haram attacked Magumeri, about 35 kilometres north of Maiduguri, the state capital, at about 6:00pm, last Saturday.
The Nigerian Army said the insurgents had earlier launched a daring attack on the 5 Brigade Garrison, a military base in the town, as a prelude to the attack on the serene town.
Deputy Director of Army/Public Relations, 8 Task Force Division, Colonel Timothy Antigha, confirmed the deaths and the injured.
He said the remains of the dead soldiers and the wounded were evacuated and taken to a military facility, and also, assured “the military is doing everything possible to ensure the safety of Magumeri town and the neighbourhood.”
Sources, however, said more than three soldiers and some civilians may have died in the attack described as “bloody.”
Boko Haram had, in the past, attempted to seize the town but the attacks were repelled by the military troops.
In August, Boko Haram abducted some oil workers and University of Maiduguri staff around Magumeri during an oil prospecting trip. Dozens of people, including soldiers, civilian Joint Task Force members, oil workers and five UNIMAID staff have killed by the insurgents.
Meanwhile, the state government has said it will convert the house of Boko Haram founder, Mohammed Yusuf, to a museum.
Commissioner for Home Affairs, Information and Culture, Mohammed Bulama, disclosed this on the sidelines of the ninth National Council for Culture, Tourism and National Orientation held in Dutse, Jigawa.
The News Agency of Nigeria reported that the council, with the theme “Tourism and culture as panacea for Nigeria’s economic recovery’’ was organised by the federal Ministry of Information and Culture.
Bulama said the museum would help archive all things related to Boko Haram insurgency, attract tourists for the benefits of future generation.
“The place is called Maarcas; we want to build a museum there, where all the things that had happened relating to the insurgency will be archived. We want to document and archive all that had happened so that our future generation will be able to have first-hand information,” he said.
Yusuf, sect leader and founder of Boko Haram, was killed in 2009 and his group has continued to constitute serious security threat to Borno and other states in the North East.
The commissioner said the state is also planning to turn Sambisa, which used to be the insurgents’ haven, to a tourist centre by reviving already existing games reserve in the forest.
Also, the Nigerian army has prevented Boko Haram from taking over Magumeri town.
Kaka Audu, a member of the civilian joint task force (CJTF) in the area, said the insurgents attacked the town from the military checkpoint and Bengel area of the town.
Audu disclosed that some of the insurgents wjp attacked from the Bengel axis managed to enter the town and torched some buildings before they were finallypushed back. He noted that echoes of gunshots and explosive devices prompted residents to flee to nearby forest.
The local militia added that most of the residents who had earlier run to the bush returned to their homes later.
The military authorities are yet to comment on the incident.
Meanwhile, Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria, (CBCN) has praised the relative peace emerging in Borno State and the infrastructural development recorded in the state despite six years of Boko Haram insurgency.
President of the conference, Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama, who led other catholic bishops on a courtesy visit to Governor Kashim Shettima, in Maiduguri, at the weekend, said they were overwhelmed by the development they saw especially in the state capital, contrary to stories of woes, blood and death since 2009 when Boko Haram struck.
The bishops were in Borno to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Maiduguri Catholic Diocese (1966 to 2016) and to dedicate a new cathedral built by the diocese.