Armed ViolenceNews

Borno Records Most Deaths, Niger Most Abductions In 2 Weeks, Data Show

Over 500 people were killed between Feb. 1 and Feb. 14, according to the Nigeria Security Tracker.

In northern Nigeria, Borno and Niger states featured prominently in records of insecurity-related deaths and abductions in the country in the first two weeks of February.

According to data collected by the Nigeria Security Tracker, 506 people were killed, while 114 were kidnapping victims in various parts of Nigeria between Monday, Feb. 1, and Sunday, Feb. 14. 

Among the fatalities were 194 civilians and 16 security agents. State forces also killed 195 suspected Boko Haram members, 83 armed criminals, 11 robbers and seven kidnappers.

Further analysis of the data revealed that the highest number of fatalities (151) was recorded in Borno, Northeast Nigeria. It was followed by Kaduna (128), Zamfara (52) in the Northwest and Niger (27) in the North Central region.

Many of the casualties were due to Nigerian Air Force bombardments in Kaduna, gunfights between soldiers and terrorists in Borno and military raids in Zamfara forest areas.

Twenty-seven people were reported killed on Feb. 1 after gunmen attacked different communities in Kurebe, Niger State, about an hour after midnight.

 The combined activities of armed criminals and terrorists have rendered a vast part of the state in the North Central region unsafe due to repeated attacks and abductions.

Also in the North Central region, Plateau State recorded attacks three days later, which led to the death of at least 12 people. 

The Commissioner of Police in the state, Mr Edward Egbuka, said the deaths resulted from clashes between different ethnic groups in the locality and reprisal attacks.

Egbuka said that four people linked to the incidents had been arrested.

In Kaduna, 19 people were killed by terrorists in the Birnin Gwari and Kajuru local government areas on Feb. 6.

“Some shops were also looted with valuable items carted away. Some of the injured have been moved to a neighbouring state closer to Kutemeshi for urgent medical attention, while others are in transit to an orthopaedic hospital in Kaduna,” Kaduna State Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs Samuel Aruwan said.

“In Kujeni village of Kajuru, the attackers burnt several houses, storehouses with foodstuff, warehouses loaded with building materials and a church,” Aruwan added.

Within the period, there were more abduction victims from Niger than any other state in the country with 40 people kidnapped during the Feb. 1 attack of Kurebe community. 

On Sunday, Feb. 14, another 21 people were kidnapped in Rafi Local Government Area while travelling between Kotangora and Minna in a Niger State Transport Authority bus. 

The terrorists later released pictures and a video showing the kidnap victims as they held automatic rifles and at least one rocket-propelled grenade.

Again, on Wednesday, an unconfirmed number of students and staff members of Government Science College Kagara, Niger State, were abducted.

Other places with high incidences of kidnapping during the period were the Federal Capital Territory (11), Delta (11) and Osun (10).

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'Kunle Adebajo

Head of Investigations at HumAngle. ‘Kunle covers conflict alongside its many intricacies and fallouts. He also writes about disinformation, the environment, and human rights. He's won a couple of journalism awards, including the 2021 Wole Soyinka Award for Investigative Journalism, the 2022 African Fact-checking Award, and the 2023 Michael Elliott Award for Excellence in African Storytelling.

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