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Borno police apprehend four individuals for alleged plot to set fire to IDP camp



Four individuals have been arrested by the Borno State Police Command in connection with an attempted arson at the Mafa IDP camp located in Mafa Local Government Area.

The apprehended suspects are Malum Usman, aged 16; Bulama Bukar, aged 14; Rawa Usman, aged 11; and their purported sponsor, Babagana Umar, aged 40.

Concerned by the recent incidents of fires at IDP camps in the state, the state government had pledged to apprehend and prosecute those responsible for such acts.

State Commissioner for Information and Internal Security, Prof Usman Tar, issued a statement on Sunday, March 31, expressing alarm about the situation and alleging a larger conspiracy involving certain NGOs.

However, during the presentation of the suspects in Maiduguri on Thursday, the state police spokesman, ASP Nahum Daso, made no mention of any NGOs being involved in sponsoring the crime.

Daso explained, “On March 24, 2024, at around 10:30 am, a group of hunters from Mafa reported to the Mafa police division about three suspects, Malum Usman, aged 16; Bulama Bukar, aged 14; and Rawa Usman, aged 11, all from the Mafa IDP camp, who were apprehended with matches while attempting to set a house on fire within the camp.”

“Further initial investigations revealed that the three suspects were allegedly hired by a firewood seller, Babagana Umar, from the Muna garage area of Maiduguri, who paid them N10,000 to carry out the arson. The case is currently under investigation,” he added.

The accused sponsor, Umar, denied any involvement in inciting the minors to commit the crime.

He stated, “I was taken into custody while I was in prayer at the mosque.

“These are baseless accusations against me. I am completely innocent.

“When I was arrested, as I knew I had never even considered setting fire to the Mafa camp, I offered to take an oath on the Holy Quran to prove my innocence, but I was refused,” he maintained.