Presidency places security on alert in Kaduna, Jos over strange text message
FOLLOWING a strange text message, warning of possible reprisal attacks and arms build-up, the Presidency has placed security forces on alert in Kaduna and Jos.
It was learnt that the government is particularly mounting surveillance on the activities of members of the Boko Haram sect.
There were also indications that the same alert may be extended to flashpoints in the South-East where armed robbery attacks and kidnappings are prevalent.
Investigation by The Nation revealed that the alert placed on the two cities was at the instance of the acting National Security Adviser, Col. Kayode Are (rtd), who has adopted a proactive style with his team.
A top official of the Presidency, who spoke in confidence with our correspondent, said the government has deployed more security operatives in the affected states.
He said a strange text message has heightened tension in Jos and Kaduna over alleged plans to embark on massacre to avenge past killings in Jos.
The text stumbled upon by security agencies reads:"Pls intercede for Kaduna and the northern states (sic) there is a strong threatening (sic) from some people to wake up in the night and start killing innocent people. This is not rumours (sic) as one of those involved in the plan told me of the plan which was discussed. Please forward to others".
The source added: "The government is not taking things for granted anymore especially following reports that some groups are building up arms in Jos and Kaduna .
"We have to embark on pre-emptive measures because this is a political period and we do not know the motives of those behind this fresh plot to cause mayhem.
"We also do not want aggrieved politicians to take advantage of any religious or ethnic stress."
It was also gathered that the government is worried about the menace of Boko Haram members.
"All security agencies have been mandated to monitor the activities of members of this sect in Northern states.
"We have to watch-list them because experience has shown that they now strike where we least expect.
"There were reports that members of the Boko Haram group would have disrupted the peaceful order in Kaduna State given their plans to attack some strategic places in the state capital during last Sallah break, but for the quick intervention of the Kaduna State Police Command.
"The Commissioner of Police in Kaduna State , Mr. Tambari Yabo Muhammmad had confirmed the planned attack by the sect at a public function in Kaduna . So, our plan now is to nip their violent activities in the bud."
On flashpoints, the top source added: "While not neglecting other states, we have identified those prone to kidnapping and armed robbery, especially the states in the South-East.
"The security agencies have come up with fresh plans to respond to the challenges in the South-East."