by Rachel Ogbu
It has emerged that a census of the Nigerian refugees in Niger Republic has reached over 6,000 since the state of emergency began in Borno state.
A Niger Republic local official told Daily Trust that according to “our statistics, over 6,000 Nigerians have crossed over to Bosso town within two weeks.”
Chairman of the Bosso Local Government in Diffa State, Bako Mammadou said although “we have not provided them with a specific camp, we have directed our people to accommodate them in their respective houses.”
A refugee, Yunusa Ali told reporters that: “There was massive influx of Nigerians into Niger Republic last Saturday when two fighter jets operated on the Nigeria/Niger borders.
“The security personnel are still pursuing the insurgents in some villages in Abadam local government of Borno state. There are still bombings by the fighter jets in the suspected stronghold of the insurgents. On Saturday, two fighter jets bombed some villages around Tumbin-Dabino, Dankatsina and Karaka.”
According to reports, refugees told a Daily Trust reporter who was in Bosso at the weekend that they fled from Tumbun-Dabina, Dankatsina, Karaka, Dogon-Marya, Mallam-Fatori and Tumbun-Danjuma villages of Abadam LGA of Borno State. Others are from Kukawa, Mobar and Guzamala villages.
Daily Trust reports:
Investigation by our reporter revealed that the refugees cross into Niger through the various feeder roads, generally on foot. Others, especially youths, ride on motorbikes.
Daily Trust also gathered that the influx into Niger was caused by tensions in Borno state, which has been the hotbed of Boko Haram violence in the past years.
Another refugee, Halima Abdullahi, said, “We trekked from Mallam-Fatori to Bosso to save our lives and our children. We don’t know what will happen to us if we stay there because last Friday some insurgents killed a policeman and other persons in Mallam-Fatori and that was why we left the area for safety.”