Bandits on Friday killed at least 13 worshippers in an attack on a mosque in Ruwan Jema community, Bukkuyum Local Government Area of Zamfara State, during Juma’at service.
The attack came barely three weeks after 44 worshippers were abducted at a mosque in Zugu community in the same local government area.
The armed men later released the worshippers days later after payment of N5 million ransom.
Ruwan Jema, a community situated 15 kilometres east of Bukkuyum town, the headquarters of the local government had suffered a number of horrific attacks in the past. The residents of the community had also paid millions of naira to bandits as levies.
A resident, Usman Lawal, said, “When they laid siege, the armed criminals stormed the mosque when the worshippers were observing Juma’at prayer. We were observing the last Rakaat when suddenly they started firing. Pandemonium broke out as every one was running for dear life.
“They opened fire on the worshippers, killing at least 13 people on the spot. Dozens of others were also injured in a stampede. The armed criminals also killed a number of residents they found in the surrounding bushes. The remains of the residents are being picked from the farms and their funeral prayer was slated for evening today. Bodies are still being picked from forest. Some of the injured victims are responding to treatments in medical facilities in Zamfara and neighbouring Sokoto state.”
The spokesman for the state police command, SP Muhammad Shehu, had not responded to our correspondent’s calls to his mobile as of the time of filing this report.