Boko Haram gunmen on Friday night carried out another attack on a military base in Borno State, an official said.
The Deputy Governor of Borno State, Usman Durkwa, who confirmed the incident to journalists in Maiduguri on Saturday said the troops and neighbouring communities were attacked in Guzamala Local Government Area of the state.
It was in Gudumbali, the headquarters of Guzamala Local Government Area that the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, in July this year, inaugurated a cenotaph to commemorate the killing of about 144 soldiers in an attack by Boko Haram in 2014.
The inauguration was done at the time persons displaced from the liberated community were returning to it.
The deputy governor however said he has no idea of the casualties from Friday’s attack.
“It is unfortunate to confirm to you that there was an attack by Boko Haram extremists in a military base and other communities of Gudumbali,” he said.
“Thousands of the people who were displaced and spent some years in a resettlement camps in Maiduguri have returned back recently after the liberation of those surrounding communities by our gallant security forces.
“I regret to inform you that there was another attack by insurgents in Gudumbali, but I am yet to get the number of casualties.
“I just spoke with the Police Commissioner, Damian Chukwu and the Brigade Commander in Monguno, both confirmed to me that the attack actually took place, and our security forces were on top of the situation,” Mr Durkwa said.
“I therefore call on the good people of the state not to panic, as government in collaboration with security operatives and members of Civilian Joint Task Force, JTF are doing everything possible to restore peace in the affected area and the state as a whole.”
An official of the Civilian Joint Task Force in Gudumbali, Bunu Bukar, told journalists in Maiduguri on Saturday that the attack was large and unexpected.
“It was on Friday evening and all of a sudden we saw people fleeing and screaming in panic,
“I saw the gunmen marching into our community and telling people to calm down and quietly pick whatever items of ours, and move out of the town as they said we were not their target.”
Mr. Bukar said he was not sure if any civilian was hurt in ensuing shootout between the armed group and Nigerian soldiers.
The military has not issued any statement on the attack.
The attack is the latest by the Boko Haram on security forces.
Scores of soldiers have died in recent similar attacks in Borno and Yobe, with many of such attacks denied by the military.
The attacks by the Boko Haram prompted the army chief, Tukur Buratai, to warn army commanders of grave consequences should they abandon their positions in the face of firepower from Boko Haram insurgents.
The Boko Haram insurgency has caused about 100,000 deaths since 2009, according to the Borno State Government.
Efforts by soldiers have since 2015 limited the actions of the insurgents to three North-eastern states of Adamawa, Borno and Yobe.