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Nyanya Bomb Blast: We Need Security, Safety Consciousness

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By Moshood Isah

Just before I picked my pen to drop
a piece about the recent blast
in Abuja, I was greeted with the
news about the 100 or 200 school
girls abducted in a village in Borno State.
It’s quite unfortunate that Nigeria’s situation
has got to crescendo level where
virtually all aspects of life are calling for
urgent attention. Nonetheless, the issue
of insecurity is the most important
as you can only seek employment, good
roads, electricity and other basic amenities
of life, only if you are alive and well.
In this vein, my heart goes out to all the
victims of the insurgency and their families
and I pray that God should bring an
end to these inhuman activities.
Although the average Nigerian believe
that activities of insurgents are restricted
to the north east of the country, the
reality is that virtually every part of the
country is not safe. It is no more news
that, north western states like Kaduna,
Zamfara, Katsina have not been spared
of the maiming that has become the
talk of the day in the nation. This is
not forgetting the rampaging marauders
in North central states like Benue,
Nasarawa and Plateau states. This is a
simple sign that insurgency is going viral
and needs drastic action.
The latest development in the spate of
attacks is most unexpected and unpredictable
because government appeared
to have taken vital security measures
around the Federal Capital Territory to
avert any form of invasion. The explosion
that rocked the densely populated
Nyanya motor park left dozens dead and
scores critically injured. A palpable level
of frenzy, anxiety and hysteria enveloped
the nation’s capital city as business
activities were immediately brought to
a halt. Fear of what would happen next
and where became the immediate issue
of discourse among both private workers
and public servants in Abuja. Bereaved
families are still moaning loudly
as innocent promising lives of loved ones
have been cut short by terrorists. The rate
at which innocent Nigerians die as a result
of bomb blasts by alleged members of the
Islamic sect, Boko Haram, has become a
source of concern to many Nigerians.
This should be a major source of concern
to residents of the nation’s capital and the
country at large. This is despite the seeming
believe about the impregnable nature
of Abuja city due to the level of security
presence in and around the Federal Capital
Territory. And barely 24 hours after the
Nyanya bomb blast pandemonium broke
out at the premises of the National Assembly
as staff hurriedly abandoned their
duty-posts as early as 1.30p.m following
rumors of a bomb planted somewhere
within the premises. Expectedly, everyone
had fled for their lives within a twinkle of
an eye. This goes more than many miles in
subjugating the fact that, there is need for
intensive security consciousness.
For some time now, the federal capital
has been relatively peaceful. As a matter of
fact, the last of any form of insurgent activity
happened towards the end of 2011
when there was an improvised explosive
device explosion at the Mogadishu Barracks
(formerly Sani Abacha Barracks).
Afterwards, security agents have been on
their toes to checkmate any form of attack
in and around the seat of power. During
period, an attempted jailbreak by suspected
Boko Haram insurgents was foiled
at the Department of State Security headquarters.
The Nyanya attack serves as a clarion
call to Federal Government in concomitance
with all the security agencies that
there is much to be done to safeguard the
citizens of this nation within the FCT and
other areas affected by terrorism. We sure
never can tell where the next attack would
come from, if the nation’s capital is not really
safe. Commentators have suggested
that there is an urgent need for security
agencies to step up their act and involve
the use of intelligence in the fight against
these terrorists, since a stitch in time saves
nine.
Finally, there is need for critical safety
measures in densely populated areas like
popular markets, motor parks and other
public places. Everybody should always
remain alert and security conscious. Security
agents can only identify and track
flashpoints.
It is the responsibility of citizens to be
conscious of strange movements and
wary of inane objects for security and
safety purposes.
Isah writes from Sapele street
Garki 2 Abuja

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