El-Rufai: Detained By Nigeria's State Security Service(SSS)
The Presidential Candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change(CPC) and former Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari, has demanded the immediate release of former FCT minister, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai who was detained by the State Security Service(SSS) Saturday morning.
El-Rufai was arrested at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport upon his arrival from London without being told of the reasons for his arrest and whisked to the SSS Headquarters.
Gen Buhari condemns this brazen act of intimidation, harassment and flagrant violation of citizens right in a democratic atmosphere. "It only shows that there are more people in our country who know how to win by hook and crook than those who know how to make proper use of their 'victory'”, he said.
He added that hounding innocent citizens to detention in less than a month in office while failing to rise to the security challenges facing the nation shows a regime that does not understand what its priorities should be.
He therefore calls for the immediate release of El- Rufai from unjust incarceration by the SSS who can then proceed to prefer whatever charges they have against him in court if he has committed any offence known to the laws of the land. "But to keep him in gaol without any charges will only cast the administration in the mould of a vindictive regime that is launching a wave of political repression because it is jittery”. He concluded. ’Yinka Odumakin. Spokesman for General Muhammadu Buhari.
According to Umaru’s declaration the acting leader of the sect in 2009 said: For the first time since the killing of Mallam Mohammed Yusuf, our leader, we hereby make the following statements-
*That the Boko Haram is an Islamic Revolution which impact is not limited to Northern Nigeria, in fact, we are spread across all the 36 states in Nigeria, and Boko Haram is just a version of the Al Qaeda which we align with and respect. We support Osama bin Laden, we shall carry out his command in Nigeria until the country is totally Islamised which is according to the wish of Allah.
It must be recalled that the Islamic group that goes by such names as Boko Haram and Jama’atu ahlus-Sunnah Lidda’awati wal Jihad had made an open declaration of war on the 28th of December 2010 after several bombs were exploded in the city of Jos, along with various Islamic killings in Kano, Bauchi and Maiduguri on the Christmas Eve. Abu Mohammed also known as Abubakar bin Mohammad Shekau the leader and spokesperson for the group said;
“I want to tell the Muslims in this country and the whole world that they need to know that this is a war between Muslims and non-Muslims… this is not a tribal war, nor is it similar to the wars of the pre-Islamic era, it is not a war for financial gains, it is solely a religious war. We did not start this war so it would not end in one week, or one month or one year. Only when we are completely annihilated and nobody chooses to continue with our struggle may be that could be the end. Or we establish a system where [Islamic] religion has the final say or [Islamic] religion determines everything, that will be the end of this war…” He went further to boast that “We are ready for anyone willing to face us, whether it is a group of people or even the government because we know who supports us, God the Creator of the universe, Allahu Akbar. Therefore, we are warning every Muslim who believes in the religion of Islam that he should never help a non-Muslim in this war. If he helps any non-Muslim and in so doing, a fellow Muslim suffers due to that, he should know that he is a dead person.”
The Police Commissioner Mohammed Abubakar admitted a security lapse on the part of his divisional police officers, whom he said had been told to watch out for Boko Haram members. The activities of the Islamic extremist Boko Haram, whose names means “Western education is sin,” were crushed by police in 2009 with the arrest of many of its members and the killing of its leader.
Lagos Police command beef up security to prevent the dastardly incident happening in Lagos, the state command yesterday beefed up security around its environs. Anti-bomb operatives from the Bomb Disposal Squad unit, Ikeja, were spotted at the entrance of the Lagos State Police Headquarters, the force Annex headquarters in Moloney, the Special Anti-robbery squad, Adeniji-Adele and the Special Fraud Unit, Milverton, Ikoyi, screening vehicles that were entering the premises. Even people on foot were not spared as they were thoroughly frisked.
The general superintendent of Deeper Life Bible Church, Pastor William Kumuyi, demanded the arrest and prosecution of the Boko Haram members and others to serve as a deterrent.
“A situation in which feuds easily lead to the burning of churches and the endless killings of church ministers and innocent citizens is an abhorrent trend which must not be allowed to continue,” Pastor Kumuyi said. “The initiative rests on the doorsteps of the security agencies to bring this unfortunate trend to an end.”The attack on the National Police Headquarters in Abuja last week was a slap and insult on the part of the security forces. Ndigwe said the attack on the Force Headquarters "is a very strong signal that nobody is safe in this country because if the seat of the nation's Police Force could be easily attacked without any resistance, then there is serious danger for the nation.
According to the report from the sect spokesman Abu Zaid: The man who bombed the Nigeria Police Force headquarters in Abuja on June 16 was a fairly well-to-do businessman who was actually on a suicide mission on behalf of the Islamic sect the Boko Haram, Blueprint can authoritatively report.
Mohammed Manga was a 35-year-old married man with five children who drove overnight from Maiduguri to Abuja in order to carry out the morning attack which left about five people dead, including a police officer, and many cars incinerated in the blast. He had left N4 million in his will for his five children – two girls and three boys – before embarking on the fateful journey to the nation’s capital.
There was proof also that Manga was accompanied on the deadly mission by at least a collaborator in the plot, who took his last photograph alive as he drove through the streets of Abuja. The collaborator(s) might have disembarked from the car before Manga reached the Louis Edet House headquarters of the Nigerian Police.
Blueprint can also authoritatively report that, contrary to a claim by the police authorities that the bomber had used a Mercedez Benz ‘V Boot’ car in his terror mission; he actually used a Honda 86 model.
These shocking details and others were made exclusively available to this newspaper by the leadership of the Islamist sect, Jama’atu Ahl-Sunnati Lil Da’awati wal Jihad, popularly called the Boko Haram, in a telephone interview in the Hausa language, fielded by the group’s spokesman who goes by the name Abu Zaid.
The group also e-mailed to our Borno State correspondent startling photographs of a grinning Manga as he undertook the revenge mission. It was the first time it was giving a glimpse into its operations.One of the most startling information given by Abu Zaid was that the attacker was one Mohammed Manga, who was better known and addressed by his friends and business associates as Alhaji Manga.“He is originally from Adamawa State but he was born and brought up in Maiduguri, where he embraced the teachings of the late Mohammed Yusuf,” the spokesman said.
Mohammed Yusuf was the leader of the group and was killed by the police in 2009 following the bloodiest clash involving the Boko Haram in which thousands of the sect’s members and other people died.Blueprint was also told by the sect that Manga was Fulani by tribe and that he started both as a commercial and private driver at different times in his adult life. A few years before the July 2009 Boko Haram uprising, Manga began to travel to Cotonou in Benin Republic and later Dubai frequently in order to buy all kinds of goods.He was a major contributor to the Boko Haram’s arms build-up.
Abu Zaid also confided in this newspaper that Manga left a will of over N4 million to his two daughters and three sons and urged fellow believers to sacrifice their lives for the sake of Allah. This, the group said, is evident in the last-minute pictures of Manga, believed to have been taken at a camp somewhere in Borno State.The man’s last will and the photographs are proof that Manga was on a suicide mission and that his death at the Louis Edet House headquarters of the police was not an accident.
“He was calm and never hesitated or showed fear,” Abu Zaid recalled, adding that everyone at the scene that night on the eve of the attack was envious, wishing it was their chance to act and gain entry into paradise. According to him, the planning of the attack targeting the Inspector-General of Police, Alhaji Hafiz Ringim, was not in any way different from the way and manner they plan other attacks around the country, insisting that the only difference was that this mission was abruptly brought closer in response to the remarks made by Ringim that he would eradicate the Boko Haram within weeks.The IGP had on June 15 boasted, while receiving10 armoured personnel carriers donated to the police by the Borno State government, that the Boko Haram’s days were numbered.
“Now that the (general) elections are over, our attention would be concentrated and I want to assure you that the days of the Boko Haram are numbered,” Ringim had told a gathering at the Government House in Maiduguri, with the state governor Kashim Shettima present.
Abu Zaid also claimed that the bomb his group used in the attack was a ready-made one, which the sect acquired from abroad. “And we are going to use several of them in future attacks,” he warned.The group dismissed media reports and commentaries that suggest it might not have planned a suicide attack but that the bomb blast was merely an accident in which the attacker was trapped, insisting that it was really pre-planned.“Everyone had waited patiently for the outcome of that operation,” said Abu Zaid.
According to him, the car that was used was not a Mercedes Benz ‘V-Boot’, but an ash-colour Honda 86 model.“I was surprised when the police said the car was a Mercedes ‘V-Boot’,” he said. “It was never a Mercedes. The car used for the attack was an ash-colour Honda 86. We are surprised over the way the police are confused anytime we strike.”
Meanwhile, the group has discredited the conditions for dialogue ostensibly given by the Boko Haram by one Usman Al-Zawahiri and others, challenging them to give a single proof that they are with the authentic group.“We don’t know Al-Zawahiri; he is not with us,” Abu Zaid said.
“In fact, our investigation revealed that he is an SSS (State Security Service operative) and was brought in to discredit what we are doing and give an impression that we are divided. There is no faction in our group.”Giving a reason why the Boko Haram chose Blueprint correspondent for breaking the news, Abu Zaid remarked: “You were the first journalist who repeatedly wrote about us when we were not known to the world; you were the first journalist who reported when our brothers were shot at on their way to a funeral procession by members of a security outfit setup by the Borno State government, known as ‘Operation Flush.’ We see you as an objective writer who is never afraid to say the truth; that is why our leader approved the idea to give you the final evidence that we were solely behind the suicide attack at the police headquarters.”
The Boko Haram is believed to be headed by one Malam Abubakar Shekau, the deputy of the late Mohammed Yusuf.
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) calling on President Jonathan to urgently re-strategise and tackle the current security challenges which had become a major threat to his administration, Ndigwe said that the Ohanaeze would soon convene a meeting to discuss the security of the nation and come up with a position because "the bombings in Iran, Iraq and other parts of the Middle East started like this."
Africa's recent development performance has generated optimistic talk that the Continent will soon join the league of “emerging markets.” While Africa has in fact, over the past decade, achieved significant gains in restoring macroeconomic stability and robust economic growth, thereby breaking with and starting to tackle the economic stagnation, debt crisis and severe poverty of the previous three decades, these developments are uneven and they need to be sustained.
Key challenges for the Continent are her exposure to external development policies and practices that do not take into consideration the cultural heritage, knowledge systems and institutions of its people, an inability to produce adequate food for its population, which getsworse with global climate change, and political instability and conflict in some countries. This is further accentuated by the limited participation of its people in decision-making, which has resulted in weak governance institutions in many African countries. Inadequate capacity also remains one of the critical missing links to Africa's development. It is therefore common cause that Africa needs to implement more bold economic reforms, build critical infrastructure, improve governance, wealth redistribution and healthcare, and enhance human capital formation through education, research and training.
Africa must shape and take ownership of its development agenda and improve governance to engage all its citizens, in order to attain greater traction toward the achievement of the MDGs by 2015 and sustainable development beyond 2015.