Residents groan as military close Borno highway
MAIDUGURI residents have lamented the closure of the Maiduguridamaturu Expressway following Boko Haram attacks in Borno State.
Gunfights between troops and Boko Haram on the expressway have become a regular affair these days, causing panic in the city.
There have also been a series of abductions on the road, forcing the United Nations and international nongovernmental organisations to stop their workers from travelling to Maiduguri by road.
The military, before the latest confrontation with Boko Haram fighters on the road, complained that two villages along the highway, Jakana and Mainok, were inhabited by insurgents and their families.
According to the military, Boko Haram fighters always launch their attacks from the villages.
The military said they decided to close the road to prevent motorists and passengers from being caught in the middle of a shoot-out.
Some of the drivers, who spoke to our correspondent on Monday, said many people had been stranded since Sunday when Boko Haram insurgents attacked communities along the road.
A Maiduguri resident lamented that many people had been unable to come into the city since the road was closed.
Another resident of Maiduguri, Abubakar Idris, who travelled to Damaturu on Sunday with a plan to return the same day, said, “I was supposed to return to Maiduguri but I have been stranded alongside many others in Damaturu, because no vehicle is allowed to travel on the Maiduguri-damaturu Expressway.”
Attempt to reach spokesman for the Nigerian Army Col Sagir Musa for comments were not successful as of the time of filing this report.