UNKNOWN gunmen on Saturday attacked the convoy of the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Ado Bayero, killing four of his palace guards.
The incident took place in the early hours of the day, after the Emir’s convoy departed from a Qur’anic graduation ceremony at Murtala Muhammed Mosque, in Kumbotso Local Government Area.
A few minutes later, some gunmen opened fire at the bus, which conveyed the ruler and top members of the Emirate Council.
This comes as six Nigerian Army casualties were also recorded in the morning Saturday when suspected terrorists attacked soldiers on the Okene-Abuja road.
Director of Army Public Relations, Major General Bola Koleoso, confirmed that two soldiers were killed while the remaining four sustained various degrees of injuries.
According to Koleoso, “our soldiers had slept over in Lokoja and left early in the morning to continue their journey. But along the way, an Improvised Explosive Devise (IED) was detonated on the convoy. And simultaneously, they were attacked from both sides of the road.
“Naturally, our soldiers countered the attack. Unfortunately, the explosive power of the IED and the simultaneous attack resulted in the death of two of our soldiers. Also, four others were injured.”
Kano Command’s Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Magaji Musa Majiya, referred journalists to the Joint Task Force (JTF) when approached for his comments on the attack on the Emir of Kano.
The JTF spokesperson, Captain Ikedichi Iweha, as at the time of writing this report, could not confirm the incident.
However, a source from the Emir’s palace confirmed the death of four guards, adding that the ruler escaped unhurt.
Earlier, a bomb-laden car, believed to have targeted the Emir’s vehicle, exploded before it could reach the convoy. No occupant of the car survived the blast.
But some gunmen killed the Interim Management Officer (IMO) of Kumbotso Local Government, who made a detour when he heard gunshots around the Emir’s convoy on Ribadu Road.
Following the incident, heavily armed security personnel cordoned off the area.
Governor Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso paid a visit to the Emir in his palace, few hours after the attack.
Only the governor was allowed access into the main court.
Gen. Koleoso said Nigerians should discountenance the story that armed robbers attacked the soldiers, asking rhetorically: “Which armed robber goes around with IEDs? It was not a robbery attack. It was a terror attack on soldiers of the Nigerian Army.”
He said immediately the attack happened, soldiers were drafted to the spot. They cordoned off the area. This caused a major traffic gridlock on the ever-busy Okene-Abuja road.
Military sources said that following the pressure on the Boko Haram sect in their traditional stronghold of Northeast, there has been noticeable movement of the remnants of the terror group in Kogi State, especially the Okene area.
Said the source: “This Saturday’s attack on Nigerian Army personnel along the axis confirms our suspicion and intelligence. Remember that this was the same area where worshippers of Deeper Life Bible Church were massacred last year. It was the same axis that soldiers of the Nigerian Army were ambushed in the same manner last year.
“But I can assure you that we are equal to the task. The terrorists and their allies in the area will now feel the heat of what they have stirred.”
The source noted that the ongoing operation, following the attack on the soldiers, would be sustained “until the area is cleared of all miscreants.”
- The Guardian