Lagos govt allays fear of attack by Boko Haram
By Olasunkanmi Akoni & Monsur Olowoopejo
LAGOS — LAGOS State Government, weekend, urged residents to disregard insinuations of imminent attack on the state by the Boko Haram Islamic sect and its breakaway faction, Jama’atu Ansaral Muslimana Fi Biladis –Sudan, saying the state was safe.
The government, however, stepped up security around Alausa Secretariat, Ikeja, the seat of goverment.
The restriction order issued by the government to vehicle owners without permit from using car park few kilometres from the Secretariat, has been intensified.
A source told Vanguard that “any staff who intends to carry out an official assignment at the weekend, henceforth, must obtain permit from the Head of Service, HOS, Mr. Adesegun Ogunlewe, before he or she could be allowed into the premises.
This came as the government ordered members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW, in Ojuelegba Bridge to vacate the area immediately for security purpose.
Speaking on the rumour of impending attack, Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Lateef Ibirogba, and his counterpart in the Ministry of Environment, Tunji Bello, said the government had already put measures in place to ensure adequate protection of lives and property in the state.
They spoke 24 hours after rumour started spreading that both Islamist sects were planning to attack the state, the commercial nerve centre of the country.
According to Ibirogba: “I will say categorically that Lagos is safe. Lagosians should not entertain any fear. We have done all we are supposed to do for Lagosians’ safety. I want to tell them to go about their normal duties without entertaining any fear. The idea of Boko Haram coming to attack Lagos is nothing to scare anybody.
“This is a proactive government and Lagosians have confidence in their government. Lagos is home to everybody and I don’t think anybody in a right frame of mind will want to extend act of terrorism or violence to Lagos. No matter how you look at it people have one interest or the other in Lagos.”
On Ojuelegba Bridge, Bello, said the decision to relocate the transporters became necessary to clean up the place and get rid of some unscrupulous elements hiding in the park to perpetrate evil at night.
He said the Kick Against Indiscipline, KAI, would now occupy the park and ensure the transporters polluting the place did not return.