Armed ViolenceNews

Maiduguri Mourns As Families Bury 8 Farmers Killed By Boko Haram

A group of eight farmers disappeared after going to their farmlands behind the Borno State University, Njimtilo, on Saturday. 

Njimitilo is a settlement bordering Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. 

HumAngle learnt that the families reported the farmers’ disappearance to the Civilian Joint task force (CJTF), a local militia group protecting communities and aiding the military offensive against Boko Haram and its splinter faction, the Islamic State’s West Africa Province (ISWAP). 

Based on the report from the families, members of the CTJF in the area mobilised to scout the farms on Sunday, after which they discovered the bodies of eight farmers summarily executed at close range. 

The Njimitilo area is positioned between the sphere of influence of ISWAP and Boko Haram. The latter group is, however, notorious for killing farmers and firewood collectors. 

In May, the Borno State Governor, Prof. Babagana Umara unveiled a masterplan to expand the Maiduguri metropolis, a garrison that provides safety for residents and displaced persons, and fortified by large military presence and WWII trenches built to stop infiltration and terror attacks. 

Governor Zulum Inspects housing sites at Auno, Njimtilo
Governor Zulum Inspects housing sites at Auno, Njimtilo

Under the new plan, the Maiduguri metropolis is to extend to Auno on the Maiduguri-Damaturu Highway.

At present, Maiduguri metropolis comprises the Maiduguri Metropolitan Council and a large part of the Jere Local Government Area (LGA).

The housing estates sited in Njimtilo and Auno are designed to eventually expand Auno to link up with Maiduguri. 

Njimtilo is also a growing industry layout, where former governor Kashim Shettima sited a network of metal, food processing, and plastic industries to create jobs. 

The attack on the farmers highlights the significant risks faced by vulnerable communities in Borno including those close to fortified garrison towns like Maiduguri.

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Murtala Abdullahi

Abdullahi Murtala is a researcher and reporter. His expertise is in conflict reporting, climate and environmental justice, and charting the security trends in Nigeria and the Lake Chad region. He founded the Goro Initiative and contributes to dialogues, publications and think-tanks that report on climate change and human security. He tweets via @murtalaibin

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