• Fire guts Borno market
Senator Iroegbu in Abuja and Michael Olugbode in Maiduguri
The Nigerian military said that calm has been restored to the Maiduguri International Airport after the riot carried out by some soldiers on Sunday night.
This is coming as fire outbreak at a popular fish market in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, left 21 shops destroyed and millions worth of wares destroyed.
The Deputy Director, Public Relations, Col. Onyema Nwachukwu, in a statement yesterday, confirmed that the Theatre Command Operation Lafiya Dole “witnessed a riotous reaction from a few unscrupulous troops while conducting a redeployment of troops who are currently deployed at the Maiduguri Airport, following a directive to review troops’ deployment in Maiduguri metropolis in a bid to reinvigorate the security architecture of the city”.
Nwachukwu said the redeployment became expedient after a recent assessment of the security situation by the Theatre Command.
Regrettably however, he said, a few of the troops who had misunderstood the development and erroneously assumed it was going to negatively affect their rotation from the theatre of operation became agitated and reacted by firing into the air.
He has however, assured that “calm has however been restored, as the Theatre Commander, Major General Abba Dikko has promptly taken charge of the situation after addressing and admonishing the troops”.
Nwachukwu said the Theatre Command considered what he described as an ugly incident, quite regrettable, adding that appropriate measures are being taken to forestall a recurrence.
Meanwhile, an inferno at a popular fish market in Maiduguri gutted 21 shops destroyed and property worth millions of Naira.
Confirming the fire outbreak yesterday, the spokesman of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Abdulkadir Ibrahim disclosed that it took the intervention of fire fighters to put off the inferno in the early hours ofyesterday.
“We cannot estimate the exact total value of goods and properties destroyed in Sunday night’s inferno, until the evacuation of fire rubles, are completed by the agency,” he said, noting that there were no losses of lives.
He explained that preliminary investigation into the incident by the State Fire Service Department indicated that an electrical spark from one of the shops in the market triggered the inferno.
He urged owners of shops in markets to be cautious in their use of electrical appliances.