An angry mob has lynched a soldier who allegedly killed five civilians at Barka da Zuwa, a well known hideout for criminals along Baga road in Maiduguri.
An eyewitness, who identified himself as Musa, said the incident happened around 8.30pm on Saturday, adding that the soldier opened fire and ordered people to leave the place.
“I saw the soldier walk in straight to where his girlfriend was seated and immediately opened fire in between her legs. He said we should leave the place. He fired three rounds of shot simultaneously.
“Those shots he fired killed two persons instantly. He fired more and killed two other persons. As he made way to escape, he fired into the air, but the boys around followed and stabbed him in the back before disarming and slaying him with knife,” Musa, a bakery worker, said.
Killings, according to available information, have become recurrent at the notorious criminal black spot located along Maimalari Army Barrack that hosts Operation Lafiya Dole and 7 Division of the Nigerian army.
“They kill people here every time. These soldiers come here with their arms and ammunition fully loaded. When they come and meet you with their girlfriends, who are all commercial sex workers, they will shoot you and run away,” another source said.
According to the eyewitnesses, the dead bodies were evacuated by relations of the victims while many others sustained injuries during the shooting.
“The military police came and evacuated the body of the slain soldier; the Igbo people evacuated the body of the Igbo boy killed by the stray bullet. He was in his shop selling when the bullet hit him; his name is Azuka. The other bodies were also evacuated by their relatives.
“But the injured ones are many; nobody can tell you how many got injured because while the police from Ibrahim Taiwo came for arrests, many people ran for safety. There was pandemonium everywhere,” Luka, a shop owner at Barka da Zuwa stated.
However, the Borno State Police Command has yet to make a statement on the incident as the state Public Relations Officer, Mr. Edet Okon, has yet to respond to messages sent to his mobile phone.
Also, the Spokesman, 7 Division, Maimalari, Col. Ado Isa, did not respond to several calls and a text message sent to him to confirm the incident.