Boko Haram Targets Northern Govt. Properties

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The Islamic sect, Boko Haram has issued new threats warning the 19 governors of northern Nigeria to be prepared as properties of government in their respective states and in Abuja, the nation’s capital, are their next target of attack.

The group said they would soon begin to carry out deadly attacks on all government establishments in northern Nigeria and Abuja, warning that such properties should be evacuated in preparation for the attacks.

According to Premium Times, an online news medium which spoke directly with Abul Qaka, the sect listed its target as government-owned properties, offices and residential quarters, in the 19 northern states and Abuja, adding that this was to avenge the destruction of properties belonging to its members and other innocent landlords in some parts of Kano and Borno States.

Qaqa announced through Premium Times that the sect was giving a notice in advance to people who use such targets because the sect did not want to kill innocent people in the attacks.

“We are not happy that innocent people are dying in our war with the government. And that is why we have reduced our attacks in the past few days to enable us to strategise,” Qaka was quoted to have said yesterday afternoon.

Accusing the Joint Task Forces in Kano and Borno states of harassing and arresting members of the sect in the two states, he was quoted as saying that, “to our utmost surprise, after arresting them, some with their wives and family members, the JTF will bring out their properties. Both the apartments and the properties are then destroyed.

“This has become the new trend and it is becoming difficult for people to rent out accommodation to people, and a lot of people, including our people are homeless.

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“Because of this trend, we have decided that in the coming days, every Nigerian, especially in the North, including Abuja, should vacate any government quarters or buildings – residential, office, classroom or anything owned by government.

“Every government building, whether occupied or empty will be blown up. Whoever is caught up in the attacks has himself or herself to blame. We have done our best by issuing this warning.”

Though spokesperson for the State Security Service, Marilyn Ogar, declined comments on the new threat, the police is said to have asked Nigerians to disregard such a threat and go about their normal businesses.

Speaking through its spokesman, Frank Mba, the police also said it was battle-ready for the sect.

“For us, security is 24 hours. Whether there are threats or no threats from criminal groups, we will continue to provide the best level of security.

“We want to urge Nigerians to disregard whatever threats there are. We also want to reassure Nigerians of our commitments to providing the citizens and other inhabitants with utmost security,” Mba was also quoted to have said in reaction, adding that the new leadership of the force had an elaborate and effective counter-terrorism and counter-insurgency strategies.

—Eromosele Ebhomele