The Nigerian government stated on Wednesday that the town of Bama had not fallen to Boko Haram.
Ahmed Zanna, a senator in Borno, told BBC a different story.
It is now known that roughly 26,000 people were displaced by Boko Haram during the struggle in Bama and nearly 200 people from the town have been killed so far. As bad as that is, it gets worse.
Boko Haram soldiers patrolled the streets and made house-to-house searches all of Thursday. The terrorists have been actively stopping residents from burying or even torching the dead. Bodies remain piled in the streets of the second largest Borno town, and Boko Haram claim to have full control.
“So many bodies litter the streets, and people are not allowed to even go and bury the dead ones. So the situation is getting worse and worse,” Zanna said after speaking to a Bama resident who fled during the Boko Haram take-over.
Witnesses who fled from Bama told journalists that some of the people killed by the terrorists had been members of a local group that was attempting to resist Boko Haram aggression. There is speculation that Boko Haram wants members of the community to see the dead bodies as a warning to anyone else looking to rebel against them.
As of last week, Boko Haram insurgents took over the Nigerian towns of Gwoza and Gamboru Ngala. Due to their consistent territorial gains, authorities are concerned about what will happen if they reach the main city, Maiduguri.
Although Maiduguri has a population of over two million, it’s still likely that the city could fall to Boko Haram. As the terrorist group plows through towns, they forcibly recruit members to join them, causing their ranks to grow. They get their equipment in a similar way. Last month, Boko Haram took over a riot police academy.
“I’m begging the government to send more troops and armoury to Maiduguri,” Zanna said.
Government forces attempted to protect the town of Bama as long as possible, but Boko Haram has grown stronger in the past month.
The terrorist group has claimed to have set up a caliphate in the areas they currently control.
There is some concern that the methods and beliefs of Boko Haram are very similar to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Authorities are speculating that they may even be working together, spreading their version of strict Islam and slaughtering “infidels.”
[ Image courtesy of 360nobs ]