A bomb blast that killed as many as 5 people and wounded at least 20 people in the eastern Nigerian city of Jalingo on Monday apparently targeted the state commissioner, Mamman Sule, according to emergency officials on ground in Taraba.
Police spokesman Ibiang Mbaseki said that the blast targeted the convoy of the police commissioner, a “prime target” who escaped the attack unhurt, although the explosives caused massive damage at a roadside market and blew out the glass windows of the nearby state Ministry of Finance building.
"The blast was between the state ministry of finance and police headquarters," Ibrahim Farinloye, local head of the National Emergency Management Agency said.
Witnesses say that the blast could have been targeting the police commissioner who drove past shortly before. He said he saw dead bodies and that at least 20 people were taken to hospital.
Jalingo is the capital of usually peaceful Taraba State.
On Sunday, at least 19 people were killed in two attacks on Christian worshippers elsewhere in Nigeria. A university theatre used for services in the northern city of Kano and a church in northeast Maiduguri, Boko Haram's home town, were attacked by gunmen.
Boko Harmisam has been fighting against President Goodluck Jonathan's government for more than two years. Its attacks usually target police and government in the mostly Muslim north of Nigeria.