Despite the ceaseless attacks by terrorist groups in the country, the most recent of which included attacks on a military church at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College, Jaji, Kaduna State, and a police detention centre in Abuja, the Federal Government Sunday assured Nigerians and the international community that the country remained safe and all security challenges were under control.
The government’s statement came just after the AFP reported that scores of gunmen suspected to be members of the Islamic extremist group, Boko Haram, set fire to three churches and border posts in Gamboru Ngala, a border town 140 kilometres from Maiduguri, the Borno State capital. Violence linked to the Boko Haram insurgency in Northern Nigeria is believed to have left over 3,000 people dead since 2009, including killings by the security forces.
But in a statement signed by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe, he described the attacks as evidence that activities of terrorists were in their last days. According to Okupe, “It is in the character of insurgencies worldwide to audaciously attack institutions that will promote maximum fears in the heart of the citizenry. “It will be recalled that in its last days, the IRA (Irish Republican Army) bombed the hotel in which the British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, and core members of her cabinet were holding a meeting.”
Responding to recent news report that the country was no longer safe, Okupe said: “It is not surprising therefore that as a consequence of the recent activities of the insurgents, some dailies reported that ‘nowhere is safe in Nigeria.’ In truth and in reality this statement is not correct.”