Ngala Attack: Soldiers saved us – Survivor Narrates
M.A Ibrahim, Collins C. Mbakwe – Maiduguri
The social media has recently been awashed with divergent versions of the Ngala, Borno State attack on Governor Kashim Shettima’s convoy. Northeast Star, being renowned for its balanced reportage, swung into investigation with a view to hearing from the survivors of the attack.
Fielding questions from Northeast Star, one of the survivors who spoke on the condition of anonymity said that the attack happened precisely at Maula, close to Logomani as they left Dikwa for Gamboru Ngala. Furthering, he explained that the horrible incident started when men in an army camouflage uniform broke the governor’s convoy with two Hilux van and concomitantly opened fire, adding that it was reliably gathered that the gun men were Bokoharam terrorists and had emerged from the Lake Chad axis. He stated that some men of the Nigerian Army who were part of the governor’s entourage, gallantly returned the open fire which enabled many of the vehicles in the convoy to reverse but however, expressed regret that one of the soldiers (name withheld) lost his life as he fell off from the vehicle and was shot.
Continuing, the survivor who was at the time of filing this report still writhing in pains from metatarsal injury sustained during the attack, stated that at some points in the fleeing process, their vehicle got stuck and they had to run for their dear lives on foot, noting that they wandered in the desert for two hours.
Still speaking, the survivor, showered encumiums on the gallantry of the Nigerian Army and described them as highly committed, noting that the soldiers saved their lives from the insurgents and showered them with so much care when they finally got to Gajibo Military Camp.
Concluding, the survivor expressed happiness that the District Head of Rann who was alleged to be missing, has arrived home safely. He used the medium to pray for the repose of the soldier and two civilians who lost their lives. His words:
“At around 6:02pm we were moving in the convoy, about nine of us were in the Sharon vehicle, suddenly we saw 2Hilux vehicles just broke the convoy and opened fire, people that are familiar with the terrain said they came out from the Lake Chad axis and we thought they were the Military, but a man beside me said they were Boko Haram Terrorist. So, I told the driver to turn. The Military vehicle behind us returned fire, allowing us to all reverse our vehicles quickly as they, terrorists did same. On that process, one of the soldiers fell off from the vehicle and was shot dead. About 20-23 cars turned immediately, we started driving very fast. Our vehicle was shot and all the glasses shattered and injured us. Shortly, our vehicle got stuck, we were deciding whether to push the vehicle or not before one of the passengers said they were all over us with their motor bikes. We all got down and started running as they opened fire on us. We wandered in the desert for almost two hours before we got to Gajibo. As you can see, my legs are all swollen and injured.
On getting to Gajibo Military camp, the soldiers told us to all lie down so as not to get hit by the fighter jet. After about ten minutes, we were screened by the soldiers before we entered and heard more than 61 of us had already entered the military camp. They nursed us and gave us food, slippers, and places to sleep. It was very emotional and surprising to me seeing the way the military took care of us.
I must say the military saved us, if not for them we would have been taken away or killed, I respect and thank them for that. When you go to places like Ngwom, Achiri and the rest you will see soldiers in the middle of nowhere alone.
People are saying the Nigerian Army is not doing anything, it is when you experience what I have and see what they do and are doing, you will appreciate their effort.
Alhamdulilah the District head of Rann who got missing as their vehicle got stuck in a trench has returned, they went away with his car, a car belonging to the Board of internal Revenue and shot the driver in the hand. A commercial bus carrying drinks was destroyed and some drinks were taken away by the terrorists.”