Day of the Gunmen: How CMD, District Head met Tragic End
By Suzan Edeh -- Bauchi
August 31, 2013, will forever remain indelible in the memory of the staff and management of Federal Medical Centre, Azare in Bauchi State. It was on that day that the Chief Medical Director of the Centre, Dr. Musa Mohammed Dambam and the District Head of Yamai Village in Dambam Local Government Area, Alhaji Adamu Manu, were brutally killed by gunmen suspected to be hired assassins.
Dr. Musa Dambam, 55, was married with seven. He was the Director of the State Primary Health Care Agency before his last appointment as the Chief Medical Director of the Federal Medical Centre, Azare.
Vanguard Metro, VM, learnt that the late medical director left the hospital on that fateful Saturday for Yamai where he hailed from. The deceased was said to be in the company of his aunt who usually accompanied him to the village, ostensibly to save the money she would have spent as transport fares.
Hajiya Aisha Daguji, the senior sister to Dr Dambam's mother told VM that she was lucky to survive the attack by the gunmen.
She explained that when they were about entering Yamai village, some men dressed in army uniform stopped their vehicle. She said she mistook them for security operatives who usually search vehicles on the highway.
"When we were almost approaching Yamai village, three men dressed in army uniform stopped our vehicle. It did not occur to me at first that they were hired assassins. When we stopped for them, one of them told my nephew to come out of the car. When he came out, the other gunman asked his colleague, 'is this the one'?. He responded that he was their target. They now asked my nephew to park the car at the roadside. It was then that it dawned on me that they were assassins and not security men," she said.
She alleged that after robbing them of all their valuables, the gunmen told the deceased to go to the back seat of the car while the one of them drove the car to Yamai village. "We arrived Yamai village around 8.00 pm. When we arrived there, they brought me and my nephew out of the car and told us to sit on the floor. One of the gunmen left us to bring another of their colleagues.
The remaining two gunmen were detailed to guard us. It was around 10.15pm that they brought the other man. It was then that they took my nephew and left. I asked them why they were leaving me behind but their response was that they would soon be back. They told me that they have a very important job to do," she claimed.
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One of the wives of the murdered District Head, Hajiya Adda Binta, also gave her own account of how her husband and the Chief Medical Director were killed in the village.
"It was around 10.30pm; we were all asleep in the house when we started hearing gunshots. We were all panicking when we woke up. It was then we heard one of the gunmen shouting at my husband to come out. I also noticed that they were holding the Chief Medical Director, Dr. Musa Dambam, hostage," she said.
According to Hajiya Binta, the gunmen commanded them to bring all the money in the house, and they obliged them.
"After robbing us of our belongings, they now started dragging my husband and the Dr.Musa Dambam towards the house of the Deputy District Head of the village. When they got to the road leading to his house, one of them brought out a gun and shot my husband several times on the chest. My husband did not survive it; he died. The gunmen waited till 5am when people usually go to the mosque to pray before they killed the Chief Medical Director. It was a horrible experience that will haunt me for the rest of my life," she said.
The Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Hassan Mohammed Auyo, confirmed the incident.
"Some gunmen who were four in number, abducted the Chief Medical Director of the Federal Medical Center in Azare and killed him. The assailants also robbed the District Head of Yamai, Alhaji Manu Adamu before killing him. After the attack, the gunmen fled to an undisclosed destination," he said, adding that the Police has commenced investigation into incident. He assured that the assassins would soon be brought to book and called on the people of the state to avail the police with any useful information that will lead to the arrest of the gunmen.
Reacting to the incident, the Bauchi State Governor, Isa Yuguda, charged security operatives in the state to fish out the killers of Dr. Dambam and ,Alhaji Manu.
The Governor who gave the charge at the palace of the late District Head, commiserated with affected families and people of Dambam Local Government over the unfortunate incident.
"It is very unfortunate that people who are contributing positively to the development of the country are fast becoming victims of hired killers and armed robbery. As a government, we condemn the killings in its entirety and urge the security operatives in the state to swing into action and ensure that those who masterminded this dastardly act do not go unpunished," he said.
The Governor warned youths against compromising their morals by accepting offers from greedy politicians who use them as their agents of destruction.
Responding on behalf of the families of the deceased persons, the District Head of Dambam, Alhaji Idris Musa thanked the Governor for the condolence visit to the community.