Armed ViolenceNews

Assassins Kill Maiduguri Businessman

Targeted cold blood killings, a major signature of the early years of Boko Haram insurgency, seemed to have returned to Maiduguri as gunmen assassinated a popular businessman on Thursday.

A middle-aged businessman known as Aga Citi in Maiduguri, capital of Borno state, Northeast Nigeria was on Thursday night murdered in cold blood by unknown shooters, sources said. 

Until his assassination, Citi was the vice-chairman of Timber Sellers Association in Borno state. He was shot around 8 pm WAT while on his way home. 

The police in Borno state command has confirmed the shooting that led to the death of the businessman. 

Eyewitnesses said Citi was gunned as he parked his car at the Shagari Low-cost commercial area, along Gubio road, to buy some noodles at a fast food joint. 

The father of six children did not notice his killers who may have trailed him from his business premises at Timber Shed market. 

The assassins closed in on him and opened fire shortly after he collected the prepared noodles and was about to drive away. 

“Aga usually stops by to buy noodles after closing from work as he heads home,” an eyewitness who claimed to see what transpired said. 

“The gunmen who came in large numbers simply fired severally at him and left in a hurry as soon as they were sure they had hit killed. 

“They did not steal or leave with any of his property, nor did they take the car. They just shot him and left, while he continued to groan in pain with his body drenched in blood.” Simon Zubairu, a family friend of the deceased, confirmed this to journalists.

Zubairu said the deceased was rushed to a nearby hospital where he eventually died as doctors battled to save his life. 

To those familiar with Maiduguri, Shagari Low-Cost is located on the opposite side of Maimalari Cantonment, the biggest military barracks in Borno state that hosts the majority of retired soldiers as well as those in service who couldn’t secure accommodation within the barracks. 

Some of the residents of Shagari Low-cost who confirmed hearing the shooting said ” we didn’t take it seriously because it is a normal thing to hear gun shootings in our neighbourhood.”

Police public relations officer, Sani Shatambaya said “the command is aware of the incident, but the  investigation is ongoing please.” 

Cold blood killings by unknown gang armed men have become a common trend in Maiduguri even as many of the residents ruled out Boko Haram involvement. 

The three recent unprovoked fatal shootings, including the one that took place at a POS vendor’s shop, involved either soldiers of the Nigerian military or the police. 

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Abdulkareem Haruna

Abdulkareem Haruna is a Nigerian journalist who has provided extensive coverage of the Lake Chad conflict in north-eastern Nigeria for over a decade. A graduate of English Language with a Diploma in Mass Communications. He previously worked as an assistant editor with Premium Times and Leadership Newspaper. Haruna has a strong knowledge of the Northeast and follows the trends in the region closely.

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