Saturday, November 21, 2015 7:24 am
A survivor of the bombing of Kano GSM market on Wednesday by Boko Haram members said he stood just beside one of the hijab wearing female suicide bombers and suspected nothing until she exploded.
Ibrahim Isa, said he was almost buried by corpses and electrocuted when the blast occurred while attempting to move out of the danger zone. According to the 30-year-old, the explosions occurred at about 4:30 p.m. immediately after he finished selling mobile phones to some operatives of the State Security Service (SSS). Isa, who sustained three fractures on his right hand and an injury to his right cheek from the electric shock, narrated that the female suicide bomber that detonated her explosive in the market stood by him and pretended to be a mobile phone customer, adding that he never thought she was a suicide bomber until she committed the heinous act.
“The blasts occurred as soon as I returned from one shop where I collected some mobile phones and sold to some DSS operatives, who are my customers,” he said. “I saw the girl standing beside me but I didn’t know she was the suicide bomber until she detonated her bomb. As soon as the bomb went off, I saw many people on the ground. I was also electrocuted and thought I was going to die before Good Samaritans came and rescued us.”
Another survivor, Musa Idris, a 26-year-old final-year Department of Economics student of the Kano State Polytechnic, who had multiple fracture on his left leg, said: “On that fateful day, I finished my lectures and headed straight to the GSM market to repair my phone with the N1,000 I collected from my dad a day before for that purpose. I was hoping to beat time so that I can rush back to school to prepare for my final examination but as I was negotiating with the technician, all I could hear was a loud sound that swept me off my feet. I could not recollect anything more until I was brought to the hospital. I was dazed and unconscious.
“Now, my problem is no longer the pains I bear, but the psychological trauma of missing my final examination. Very soon, my classmates will be going for the NYSC programme, but here I am with a fractured leg. I never believed this could happen to me. I am now in a pathetic situation. I am from a poor family. My father had invested almost all his life savings on me, hoping to reap back, but now that I am about graduating, Boko Haram has put a coma on my future.”
Abdulsalam Sani, 32, and son of immediate past Commissioner for State Affairs in Kano, Comrade Aminu Abdulsalam, was also a victim. He said: “I drove to the GSM Market with the intention of buying a mobile handset. Immediately I parked my car, and in my attempt to enter the market, I heard a bomb blast. As I was making another attempt to reverse my car, not knowing that another bomb was close to where my car was, I heard another blast. And I got injured on my two legs and my right arm. That was how I was brought to AKTH.”
Najib Ali, 25, who is on admission at the Murtala Muhammed Specialist Hospital with severe head injury, said he was in the market to buy battery for his cellular phone when the incident occurred. He prayed for God to have mercy on the souls of the dead and added that he had accepted what happened to him as predestined by God.
Zakaria Yakasai, alias Babawo, a student of the aminu Kano College of Islamic Studies , said he was the only survivor among those knocked down by one of the suicide bombers.
“I was less than 20 steps away from my shop inside the market when I felt a shock all over my body and it was like the building fell on me. I didn’t know whether I hit the ground or not but I am sure that nobody among the people affected by the blast followed after I found myself outside the market.
“It was a miracle I survived with minor burns on my right hand and on my forehead. I also had a small puncture below my ribs, which I believed was caused by the flying shrapnel and my hair also got burnt as a result “, said Zakaria, who sells phones and also repairs them after school hours .
*The bomb survivors spoke with TheNation and Leadership newspapers