ABUJA, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) -- Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has condemned the bomb attacks in Yobe and Borno States that killed dezens of people on Friday.
In a statement issued late on Saturday in Abuja, the Nigerian leader said the attacks could not be in the name of religion, but a pursuit of an unholy agenda.
The President, according to the statement, said the attacks were also a violation of the spirit of the season of Eid-el-Kabir, which signifies love, brotherhood, friendship and good neighborliness.
It said the President put off appearance in all his engagements on Saturday, including his brother's wedding, because of the sad events.
The statement said the President has directed security agencies to ensure the arrest of the perpetrators of the heinous acts.
Gunmen suspected to be members of the Boko Haram on Friday launched bloody bomb attack late Friday in Damaturu, capital of northeast Yobe State.
The sect, according to residents, stormed the serene town at about 5 p.m. local time and attacked the state office of the anti- terrorist squad of the Nigerian Police with explosive and thereafter bombed the Yobe State Command office of the Nigeria Police.
Nigeria's Commissioner of Police in northeast Yobe State Sulemon Usman has confirmed the death of 53 people comprising of 17 security agents and 36 civilians in the bomb attacks. Earlier reports put the death toll to over 100.
Residents started hearing gun shots and blasts from explosive and were later shocked to learn that the police headquarters and about ten churches have been bombed.
Six bombs went off in different parts of the town with the main targets of the 360 Housing Estate, the Anti-Terrorism Squad office and the Police headquarters.
At least one church- St Mary's Catholic Church- was burnt by the rampaging men. The parish priest was reportedly taking refuge at a police station. Gun shots shook the town for much of Friday night forcing residents to stay indoors.
The gunmen also carried out attacks in Potiskum, a nearby commercial town. Both Damaturu and Potiskum are 120 kilometers and 230 kilometers respectively to Maiduguri, the hotbed of the Boko Haram uprising.
Maiduguri has been hit by almost daily bomb blasts, shootings and serial killings in recent weeks blamed on the sect Boko Haram, an Islamic fundamentalist group pursuing the doctrine of hatred for Western form of civilization with the force of arms.