News / Africa

Boko Haram Claims Responsibility for Abuja Bombing

Boko Haram Claims Responsibility for Bombing in Nigerian Capitali
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Heather Murdock
April 21, 2014 5:39 PM
The Nigerian militant group known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a bombing in the capital on April 14th that killed 75 people. In the video message, Abubakar Shekau, the man who says he ordered the bombing, says nothing about the mass abduction of more than 100 teenage girls, most of whom are still missing. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Abuja.
Heather Murdock
The Nigerian militant group known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a bombing in the capital Abuja on April 14 that killed 75 people.  In the video message, Abubakar Shekau, the man who says he ordered the bombing, says nothing about the mass abduction of more than 100 teenage girls, most of whom are still missing.  

At a hospital in Abuja, survivors fill rooms and the hallways.  Some are unconscious, others slowly sip Ovaltine and milk.
 
“I was about to enter the bus when I heard the bomb sound, boom!  Then I fell down and my face was shattered," said Sahadu, a civil servant who was on his way to work when the bomb went off.
 
The attack on the bus station, Nyanya, was the first attack in the capital since 2012.  Hours after the bombing, blood still stained the ground and stunned crowds quietly stared at the bomb site.
 
Boko Haram, an insurgent group that has killed thousands of people in the past few years, usually launches attacks in the northeast.  The government has deployed thousands of troops in efforts to crush the insurgency.
 
But analysts say violence is still increasing, and 1,500 people have been killed in the first three months of this year alone.

“It raises questions about the use of resources because never in the history of this country has so much money been devoted to defense," said Clement Nwankwo, who is with the Policy and Legal Advocacy Centre in Abuja.  "And yet there’s very little evidence of the impact of the spending on the effectiveness of the spending in the fight against terrorism."
 
Northern security forces were also on high alert last week after more than 100 girls were abducted from a school.  Boko Haram has not claimed responsibility but the group, which is believed to have many factions, is widely blamed.
 
Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, president of the Christian Association of Nigeria, says despite the increase in violence and the increase in spending, the Nigerian military is doing the best it can with the resources it has.
 
“We must commend our military men.  If you pull them out, for example, that part of the country would be lost completely," he said. "So they are doing well, but they have challenges."
 
Unpredictable guerilla warfare, not enough soldiers and small pockets of support for Boko Haram among civilians and officials are among those challenges, he says.
 
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan called an emergency security meeting last week, but decision-making was postponed because opposition leaders, including the governors of the states under emergency rule, did not attend.
 
At another hospital across town, men wait for the body of their friend and brother to be released for burial.
 
Mutula Ibrahim lost three brothers in the Abuja bombing.
 
“There’s no place in Nigeria that doesn’t know pain.  Armed robbers, accidents, bombings can happen anywhere," he said.
 
Mutula says the government cannot, or maybe will not, stop the attacks, so the only thing left for them to do is to pray for peace.

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Comments
     
by: Agu Favour from: Lagos
May 02, 2014 1:04 AM
My country people let's stop accusing one another conern this issue bokoharam or no bokoharam I want to remand us the Bible the word of God says when we beinging to hear the rumours of war that is the sigh of the end of the world,my people my advise to you all is this,if you have not repented from your evil living another
Chance will not come than these repent now that you maybe save.I have said it before the bokoharam you see today are the ant-christ of tomorrow that will going to torment people after ressuration of the saints.matt 24:6-13

by: miebi clever from: Benin republic
April 29, 2014 10:15 PM
From what i red the report posted, the government has deployed thousands of troops in efforts to crush the insurgency. But analyst say violence is still increasing, and 1,500 people have been killed in the first three months of this year only. my comment is violence against violence isn't a good way to beat crimes at all time, it will only make the world more messy. You don't need to beat somebody to teach the person to be good at all time. Government should use another method to deal with these issue befor the nation would be doomed. One man can't fight a nation, the nation is bigger than the one man so government should use different strategy in solving problems.

by: Bello Bichi from: Colorado Springs CO 80918
April 25, 2014 10:26 PM
I don’t think the Nigerian military deserve any commendation but condemnation; this is so because if you know how strong the Nigerian military was in the last two to three decades you would wonder why it’s taking the military all these while to crush the Boko Haram insurgents. I could remember in 1980 it took Major Haliru Akilu (now retired Brigadier General) less than seven days to crush Maitatsine insurgents, I don’t see why it’s taking the military all these while fighting Boko Haram without much success. Something is hidden somewhere. It is my believe that the insurgents are not stronger than the Nigerian military, but the government is using the Boko Haram issue to syphon money from the public treasury in the name of defense and fighting Boko Haram insurgents. Let us think beyond Boko Haram issue.

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