BusinessDay

Abuja terror alert: Nasarawa convenes security meeting to tackle emerging challenges

Following the warning of a possible terror attack issued by the US Embassy at the nation’s capital, Abuja, the Nasarawa State Government says it has taken proactive measures to tackle emerging challenges of insecurity in the state.

Governor Abdullahi Sule who stated this Friday at an expanded Security Council meeting in Government House in Lafia also decried the resurgence of communal, farmer/herder clashes in some parts of the state.

According to the Governor, the essence of the meeting was to take proactive measures in the wake of the terror alerts, especially since Nasarawa State shares the same border with the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), where it was alleged that terrorists may launch attacks on public places like government buildings, markets and praying grounds.

Sule further said that it has become necessary to meet in order to strategize on how to protect the people of the state, as whatever that affects the FCT, will definitely affect Nasarawa State.

“We are all aware that more countries are joining the US and UK to warn their citizens on the security alert about possible attacks in Abuja, especially government buildings, places of worships, schools, markets and the rest of that.

“Whatever affects Abuja, definitely affects us. So, we can’t wait until something happens. We said we wanted to be proactive, we could not wait until situations happen before we take any action,” Governor Sule said.

He explained that one of the major reasons for convening the meeting was for the Security Council to be proactive, get ready and plan against all these alerts.

Read also: Prosper Africa to scale fashion and art business in Africa

“It’s better for us to be prepared and nothing happens at the end, than for us to be unprepared and something happens,” he said.

The Governor said that the meeting also deliberated on steps to take to tackle resurgence of both communal and farmer/herder clashes in the state, particularly in Kokona, Keana, Doma and Nasarawa and Toto Local Government Areas.

He explained that, local government chairmen of the affected councils were invited to the security meeting to brief the council on the true situation of things.

“In addition to the fact that more communal clashes also continue to happen, especially the recent between Idiagba and Aba communities in Mararaba Udege area, It’s very important that we see this, especially because of the elections that are coming and some people will use the opportunity of politics in order to capitalise on it and escalate some of these problems,” the Governor said.

He particularly decried the recent resurgence of ethnic militia attacks, which led to the killing of six people along the Rukubi/Akpanaja/Makurdi road in Doma Local Government Area, as well as the killing of a Fulani man in Giza, Keana Local Government Area.

“For whatever reasons, there is renewed farmers/herders conflict. Unfortunately, we thought we had taken care of this once and for all, but they continue to happen now more and more especially in Kokona, Keana, Doma and Nasarawa Local Government Areas.

“And they are becoming more and more pronounced. And we have to put heads together and that’s the main reason I invited the chairmen of the local government to come,” he said.

He further explained that “In one of such recent attacks, a police sergeant was brutally murdered in Uke, while there are still communal clashes over the issue of chieftaincy, especially that of Ogapa, in Oto village of Udege Development Area.”

The expanded security meeting had in attendance members of the state Security Council, selected local government chairmen and traditional rulers.