Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Nigeria 'ceasefire' with Boko Haram in doubt after fresh unrest

23 October 2014, 21:25

Kano - A deadly bombing in northern Nigeria and new details about kidnappings at the weekend blamed on Boko Haram cast further doubt Thursday on the government's claim that the militants have agreed to a truce.

As reports emerged that extremists seized dozens more women and girls from the remote northeast leaving a few dollars behind as a so-called 'bride price' fresh violence rocked the town of Azare in Bauchi state.

A police spokesman for the state, Mohammed Haruna, said a bomb blast at a bus station in Azare killed five people, with their bodies "burnt beyond recognition," and injured 12 others.

No-one claimed responsibility, but Bauchi has been attacked repeatedly throughout Boko Haram's brutal five-year uprising, which has left more than 10,000 people dead.

Also read: Doubts surrounding Boko Haram deal

Azare resident Musa Babale said the explosion on Wednesday "shook buildings" and sent locals rushing for shelter.

"The whole place was a mess," he told AFP after visiting the site.

Several witnesses said they believed the bomb had been planted in a parked car, but police did not give details on the nature of the device.

Bus station bombings have become something of a hallmark for the insurgent group after twin attacks at a terminal on the outskirts of the capital Abuja earlier this year killed nearly 100 people.

The station in Azare, a town roughly 200 kilometres (125 miles) from the state capital Bauchi city, is a widely used transit point for travellers coming from Nigeria's embattled northeast, which has been under a state of emergency since May last year.

$9' per hostage

Reports of fresh kidnappings by the extremists first emerged Saturday near the town of Chibok, where more than 200 schoolgirls were seized in April in an attack that sparked outrage worldwide.

Details of unrest in the remote region with a poor telephone network often take days to emerge.

Residents of the town of Wagga told AFP Thursday that 40 females were kidnapped by suspected Islamist gunmen who went door-to-door, specifically looking for young women and girls.

"They left 1,500 naira ($9, seven euros) and some kola nuts in each home where they seized a woman, apparently as a bride price," said Lazarus Baushe, an elder of the Wagga community.

Enoch Mark, a priest from Chibok who previously worked in Wagga and has close ties there, told AFP an estimated 40 people were taken, in an account supported by several others.

Witnesses in the nearby town of Gwarta separately reported a kidnapping at the weekend involving another 20 female victims, but details were not immediately clear.

Dubious ceasefire

Confirmation that the Bauchi bombing or the latest abductions were tied to Boko Haram would further undermine the government's claim to have negotiated a ceasefire with the extremist group.

The surprise truce was announced Friday by Nigeria's top military officer, Air Marshall Alex Badeh.

A senior aide to President Goodluck Jonathan said Boko Haram had agreed to release the 219 schoolgirls held hostage since they were abducted on April 14 in Chibok.

But evidence is mounting that both pacts were hollow.

Violence raged throughout the weekend and the credibility of the so-called Boko Haram negotiator has been widely questioned.

There has been no comment so far from Boko Haram's purported leader Abubakar Shekau and hopes voiced by the presidency that the girls would be released by Tuesday came to nothing.

Nigerian negotiators were reportedly set to resume talks with Boko Haram envoys in neighbouring Chad next week, but further questions will likely be asked about the identities of the purported rebel negotiators.

Boko Haram, which wants to create an Islamic state in mainly Muslim northern Nigeria, is a fractured group with different commanders controlling rival cells in various regions.

Analysts doubt that the individuals in talks with Nigeria have the influence to enforce a blanket ceasefire.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...