By Our Reporters
In his reaction to the bomb blast, UK Foreign Office Minister for Africa Mark Simmonds condemned the attack and reiterated UK commitment to support efforts to counter terrorism.
A statement issued, yesterday, and signed by Head Political Section, Paul Edwards said: “I was appalled to learn of another senseless bomb attack in the city of Maiduguri in northeast Nigeria.
Today’s attack outside a bank in the city has claimed the lives of more innocent Nigerians and follows the shootings at schools in Maiduguri yesterday in which a number of teachers were killed and students injured, as well as a bomb attack at a bus station yesterday in Kano.
“I wish to offer my condolences to the bereaved and injured and condemn those responsible for such despicable acts of violence. There can be no justification for these attacks which have killed and injured ordinary Nigerians going about their daily business.
The UK will continue to support the Nigerian authorities in their efforts to counter the terrorist threat in Nigeria and to help bring those responsible to justice.
CAN urges FG to prosecute suspects
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), on its part, called for synergy of the kanoState Government and the security agencies to forestall future occurrence.
The President of CAN, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor who condemned the bombing also called for speedy prosecution of Boko Haram suspects by the Federal Government, while fishing out the sponsors of the sects.
Oritsejafor in a statement by his Special Assistant, Media and Public Affairs, Kenny Ashaka, in Abuja, urged security agencies to intensify intelligence gathering, and that, people should volunteer information to assist them, just as he commiserated with the families of the victims.
According to the statement: “The Federal Government cannot continue to condemn these heinous acts of the enemies of unity and agents of death without prosecuting those already arrested. This does not add up in any way. The Federal Government should do the right thing by prosecuting those already in its net with proven record of complicity.
“I plead with the government to fish out the sponsors of Jama’atul Ahlis Sunnah Lidda’awati Wal commonly called Boko Haram and the Islamic group, Jama’atu Ansaril Muslimina fi Sudan better known as Ansaru, an al-Qaeda-aligned group and a splinter group which specialty is the kidnapping and killing of Christian foreigners.
“Those betraying others by working underground with enemies of the nation should also be fished out and dealt with in accordance with the laws of the land.
“The barbaric and sustained bomb and gun attacks on innocent Nigerians is the reason why we in CAN are calling on the Federal Government to support our call for the branding of the Boko Haram sect as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation, FTO.
“I, therefore, call on Nigerians to volunteer information to the various arms of the nation’s security agencies. I also call on members of the sect to remember that in Islam, killing a human is an act that is equal in gravity to unbelief and regretted that some religious leaders and immature Clerics have no other weapon to hand than their fundamentalist interpretation of Islam which they use to engage people in struggle that serve their purpose.
OPC cautions Arewa, says attacks will generate bad blood
President and founder of Oodua Peoples Congress, OPC, Dr Fredrick Fasehun who also condemned the bomb attacks said: “With the recent cold murder of several polio immunisation officials, the killing of seven foreign hostages in the region, killing of school teachers and pupils and several senseless murder, it would be difficult for any citizens from the south to venture into the far north for business opportunities. Should this orgy of violence continue, the North will be the loser, as violence will only retard development and make the zone unattractive to investors.”
He warned that if the killings continue, it may reach a situation where people will not be able to travel to that part of the country. “And in reprisal, the South may create an unhealthy atmosphere for Northerners to campaign in these parts. This madness must stop. Northern politicians must lead the battle for peace in their region and put insurgents on the leash.
Reps to meet SGF on terrorism
MEMBERS of the House of Representatives, yesterday in a resolution, mandated the committees on Public Safety, Army, Defence and Police Affairs to engage the Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, to solve the problem of terrorism in the country.
In the motion simply titled ‘need to end terrorism activities in Nigeria’ Olaifa who moved the motion said, “Several innocent Nigerians have been killed in the last threes years due to the activities of Boko Haram.”
Olaifa explained that “several conflicting details have been given as the reasons why the group decided to unleash terror on the Nigerian establishment and innocent Nigerians.
“The economy of the northern part of Nigeria, its education and other social welfare programmes have nose-dived significantly, further worsening the standard of living of the citizens.”
Kano bomb Attack: It is callous, atrocious and ungodly — Ekweremadu
Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu in his reaction described the Monday killings by a suicide bomber as callous, atrocious and ungodly.
In a statement by his Special Adviser, Media, Uche Anichukwu, Senator Ekweremadu who condemned in very strong terms, the bomb attacks in Kano, however, stressed that what took place was at variance with Nigerian cultures and religious faiths.
He said: “While calling on the security agencies to fish out the culprits, it is my fervent prayer that those behind these wicked acts come to repentance, embrace dialogue, patriotism, and respect for human life as prescribed by our laws, cultures, and religious faiths.”
The Deputy President of the Senate, who prayed for the peaceful repose of the dead and quick healing of the wounded, also condoled with the government and people of KanoState and all Nigerians who lost their loved ones in the attacks.