Kaduna bomb targeted prominent Islamic cleric, Sheikh Gumi

Shiek Gumi

Mr. Gumi, who has been critical of Boko Haram, may have been the target of the bombers

Sani Tukur

The bomb blast in Kaduna, Tuesday afternoon, may have been targeted at a renowned Islamic Scholar and medical doctor, Ahmed Gumi, sources in Kaduna say.

A witness who prefer not to be named said “though the explosion may have been accidental, the Sheikh is clearly the target because the incident occurred just when he was about to leave for the daily Tafsir he delivers at Sultan Bello Mosque.”

It is not clear who the bearers of the explosive were. However, the Islamic cleric has been very critical of the Boko Haram sect as well as the Federal Government in his Ramadan sermons this year.

The cleric is one of the few prominent Islamic clerics, based in Northern Nigeria, who publicly condemn the activities of the sect.

Meanwhile, the spokesperson for the Kaduna State Police Command, Abubakar Balteh, while confirming the incident, said only two bodies, believed to be those of the assailants, were found at the scene of the blast.

But some witnesses say three persons were on the motorcycle on which the attackers rode before the explosion.

Mr. Baltzh said, “two persons on a motorcycle were killed from an IED (improvised explosive device) that accidentally exploded on transit.”

Speaking further, Mr. Balteh said “the incident occurred around 3:45pm around Modibo Adama Junction leading to the residence of Sheikh Dr Ahmed Gumi near NNPC Mega station along Ali Akilu way.”

“However, no other casualty is reported and we have already commenced investigation into the explosion,” he said.

Kaduna, the political capital of old Northern Nigeria, has witnessed several attacks by the Boko Haram group.

In July, the group attacked the home of Namadi Sambo, the Vice president, in Zaria, killing one person.

Several bomb attacks in the state, especially on places of worship and private residences, have also caused the death of dozens of people.

Tuesday’s explosion came amidst reports that the Boko Haram sect had begun negotiation with the Federal Government .

A man, Abu Mohammed, who claimed to be the deputy leader of Boko Haram, called the Voice of America to inform them that the sect was having discussions with the FG.

Mr. Mohammed called a VOA reporter in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, to talk about the negotiation which he said was facilitated prominent Northern leaders.

PREMIUM TIMES could not independently verify Mr. Mohammed’s claim.

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