T he Nigerian Army and Security agencies have deployed their personnel to secure strategic parts of the country following threats by Boko Haram insurgents to strike in some major towns during the Eid-el-Kabir celebration.
NAIJANEWSROOM correspondents across the country noted that the Directorate of State Services, the Army, Navy, Airforce, Police and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, are collaborating to ensure a hitch-free celebration.
The Defence authorities have asked places of worship to ensure screening of people during the Sallah celebration.
The Acting Director, Defence Information, Brig. Gen. Rabe Abubakar, told NAIJANEWSROOM in Abuja that it was important for residents to volunteer necessary information about any suspicious object and strange faces in their areas.
He said Boko Haram members in the past, usually disguised as ‘mad people’ to have access to markets and other large gatherings in order to carry out heinous acts against the country and the citizenry.
The Assistant Inspector-General of Police in charge of Zone 2 Command Lagos, Abdulmajid Ali, has ordered the deployment of more than 200 personnel of the zonal command headquarters to Lagos and Ogun commands on special duty.
The AIG Zone 2 emphasised on the need to police major highways within the zone for protection and safety of road users and commuters as many hoodlums might likely take the advantage of heavy flow of traffic and movements of people during the festive period.
In Katsina State, the Police Command said 2,000 policemen would join other personnel from the NSCDC, to provide security to the various Eid grounds (Muslim prayer centres), popular relaxation joints and other sensitive areas in the state throughout the two-day ceremony.
The police spokesman, Salisu Agaisa, told NAIJANEWSROOM that Armoured Police Carrier and other anti-bomb devices, would also be deployed in the prayer grounds and other strategic points in the state.
In Benue state, the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Bashir Makama, told NAIJANEWSROOM that adequate security measures had been put in place to forestall any possible breakdown of law and order during the eid-el Kabir celebration in the state.
He said, “The command has deployed enough men and officers to guard prayer grounds, ram markets, parks and all flashing points in the state. Nobody will be allowed to go to the prayer ground with private security or any form of object.”
Kano State Police Command said it has trained a squad, specifically charged with the responsibility of patrolling the metropolis round the clock, to keep hoodlums off the streets throughout the festive period.
The command’s spokesman, Musa Majiya, said that his officers and men, in collaboration with other security agents have warned members of the public not to come to places of worship with objects apart from their praying mats.
The Bauchi State Commissioner of Police, Haliru Gwandu, told NAIJANEWSROOM that black spots in the state were being raided to clear them of all miscreants who could constitute a threat to the peace of the state.
He said that all public places including the palace, markets and prayer centres will be secured.
In Osun State, the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Femi Oyeleye, said, “There are undercover and uniformed officers all over to make sure that the state is safe from criminals.”
Also, our correspondent observed that there was a heavy presence of policemen at various entry points to the state capital and on major streets.
The Anambra state police commissioner, Mr Sam Okaula, dismissed rumours of a possible herdsmen attack on the state during the period and assured residents of adequate security throughout the Sallah period.
The Police Public Relations in Niger State, Bala Elkana, said over 5,000 policemen would provide security throughout the sallah period.
The NSCDC Commandant in the state, Philip Ayuba, has also appealed to the people to report any gathering capable of breaching the peace of the state.
The PPRO of the Cross River State Police Command, Ms. Irene Ugbo, said that police would focus more on Bogobiri in the Calabar Municipal Local Government, where there is heavy concentration of Muslims.
The Head of the Hausa-Fulani Muslim Community in Cross River State, Lawal Salisu, said all arrangements concerning security had been left in the hands of the Police and Department of State Services.