Up from the initial toll of 43 rice farmers killed at Koshebe village in Jere Local Government Area of Borno State by suspected Boko Haram insurgents on Saturday, the United Nations (UN) on Sunday said no fewer than 110 people were killed in the attack.
The UN Humanitarian Coordinator, Edward Kallon, as quoted by AFP News Agency, made this disclosure while giving an update on killings in the northeastern part of the country.
Although the victims lived in Zabarmari, a farming community in Jere Local Government Area which is famous for rice cultivation and local processing, the attack occurred at Koshebe village.
“No fewer than 110 civilians were killed in the North-East Nigeria attack. The weekend attack on a village in northeastern Nigeria blamed on the Boko Haram jihadist group left at least 110 dead,” Kallon said.
The disclosure by the UN coordinator was corroborated by the Initiative for Conciliation and Rights Protection (ICRP) which reported on Sunday that apart from over 40 farmers killed, many women employed to work on the Kwashabe Rice Farm were still missing after the attack.
A tweet by the group, @_ ICRP_, on Sunday, pointed out that 16 of those killed were discovered to be internally displaced persons (IDPs) who were resident at the farm centre in Maiduguri.
Meanwhile, the 43 rice farmers killed on Saturday were buried on Sunday amid wails by residents of Jere Local Government Area of Borno State.
AUTHENTIC ALSO POSTED: Boko Haram beheads 43 farmers in Borno
The attackers were reported to have first tied up the farmers working on the rice field on Saturday morning before slitting their throats. Borno State governor, Babagana Zulum, who attended the burial of the farmers, said residents informed him that the death toll could be as high as 70, because some of the farmers were still missing.
He noted the imperative for Nigeria to forge closer cooperation with its neighbouring countries so as to defeat insurgency that had ravaged the nation for over a decade. He pleaded with the Federal Government to recruit more indigenes of the state into the military and other security agencies to combat the insurgency.
On his part, Zulum said his administration would recruit more hunters and members of the Civilian Joint Task Force (CJTF) to complement the efforts of the military and other security agencies.
“We will restrategise and ensure total domination of the Zabarmari, Gonglong, Koshebe axis of the state.
“We will recruit more CJTF and hunters so that our people can take the fight to all nooks and crannies of this area.
“We appeal to the Nigerian Army and Air Force to strengthen their support, with a view to defeating the insurgents,” Zulum said.
Furthermore, Zulum observed that the insurgents who killed the farmers were from Wuda-Taya Game Reserve area. He noted that there was the need to raid the area to save the farming community known for mass production of rice. Chairman of rice sellers in the area, Mallam Hassan Zabarmari, called for more security presence to protect farmers.
“We are expecting bumper harvest but with this incident, we are afraid to go to our farm in Koshebe village which has been vacated.
“The insurgents have even started burning our farms. We need help,” Hassan pleaded.
John Eneche Counters United Nations’ Claim Of 110 People Being Killed In Borno
Nigerian Defence Headquarters’ Director of Information, Maj. Gen. John Enenche has countered the United Nations’ claim of 110 people being killed over the weekend in Borno.
It was reported earlier that United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Edward Kallon said no fewer than 110 farmers were killed in Saturday, November 28 attack on rice farms in Zabarmari community in Borno state.
Reacting to this in an interview on Channels Television today November 30, Enenche stated that what the military have so far counted with the locals is 43 bodies. He noted that the military is still searching for dead bodies, while also admitting that some people ran into the bush during the attack.
He added that while there is a possibility of the death toll rising, he is however hopeful that those who ran into the bush will return alive