But for vigilance and timely response of security agents, another improvised explosive device (IED) would have exploded at Emab Plaza, shortly after the one that killed 21 persons and sent many others to hospitals for treatment on Wednesday.
Coordinator of the National Information Centre (NIC), Mr Mike Omeri, said this in Abuja on Friday when he led other members of the centre in a media briefing on government’s efforts to curb insurgency in the country.
He explained that the prompt action of the security agents on that afternoon led to the arrest of one of the attackers and the killing of another that was almost using his gadgets to detonate the second and possibly the third deadly device.
Omeri, however, disputed insinuations that the CCTV cameras installed around some areas in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) were not functioning as a syndicate had stolen most of the batteries installed in them.
He said that Minister of the FCT, Senator Bala Mohammed, told him that the cameras were functioning and that more were to be installed.
Omeri advised citizens to also install the cameras in their premises to complement those of government.
While refusing to give details, the Director General of the National Orientation Agency (NOA) gave the assurance that efforts by the military, especially in the North East, to subdue the Boko Haram terrorists were progressing steadily and that the war was being won by government troops.
“While we do not want to go into details of operations currently taking place, it is advised that the practice in which some persons just bandied figures of casualties on either the side of the military or insurgents should be discouraged and checked. The truth remains that the military is winning the war and the nation shall surely triumph in this fight,” he declared.
He also urged Nigerians, especially parents and pupils, to ignore messages on the social media that some schools were being targeted for attack and assured that security agencies were working to ensure that schools were safe and academic activities remained unhindered.
While responding to worries that terror suspects were being held without trial, Police Public Relations Officer, Mr Frank Mba, who was promoted to the rank of an Assistant Commissioner of Police on Thursday, appealed to the public for patience.
Mba noted that investigations on terrorism cases were tenuous and strenuous, but pledged that once investigations were concluded, every suspect would be prosecuted.