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Nigerian Government Prepares Anti-Terrorism Measures

  • James Butty

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan speaks during a press conference on December 7, 2010, after a special summit of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) heads of States on Ivory Coast's electoral crisis.

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan speaks during a press conference on December 7, 2010, after a special summit of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) heads of States on Ivory Coast's electoral crisis.

President Goodluck Jonathan's spokesman Ima Niboro says the new measures will include the naming of a terrorism advisor

A spokesman for Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan said Nigeria’s stability is not threatened because of the recent spate of terror-related bombings in the country.

A New Year’s Eve explosion in Abuja killed four people, while about 80 people were killed a week earlier in a series of bombings in the central city of Jos.

Spokesman Ima Niboro told VOA President Jonathan will soon announce a series of measures to confront terrorism in Nigeria.

“The president is going to appoint a new special advisor on terrorism who’s going to be in charge of all these issues, you know, collect all the information and make sure that there’s better suspicion of these events before they happen,” he said.

Niboro said Mr. Jonathan will appoint the special terrorism adviser in the next week. He said the president will also work with parliament to ensure the speedy passage of an anti-terrorism bill.

Militants wearing black masks, military fatigues and carrying Kalashnikov assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenade launchers patrol the creeks of the Niger Delta area of Nigeria, 24 Feb 2006

Militants wearing black masks, military fatigues and carrying Kalashnikov assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenade launchers patrol the creeks of the Niger Delta area of Nigeria, 24 Feb 2006

“He’s also going to liaise with the National Assembly to fast-track the passage of the anti-terrorism law. The president himself is going to lead this process of engagement with the National Assembly to ensure that this law is passed,” he said.

Niboro said the new anti-terrorism measures will also include the introduction of close-circuit TV cameras in cities and other urban centers so that there is greater monitoring of who’s coming and going.

He denied Nigeria is a volatile country and that the government is responding too little, too late to the threat posed by terrorism.

“I first will not agree with you that Nigeria is a volatile country. Of course, we have skirmishes here and there, but Nigeria is a big country and some of these things are far remote. Where we had the concentration of difficulty has been the Niger Delta, and we came up with the amnesty plan and it is working. This trend that we are seeing now is very new to Nigeria. So, as it happens, we are responding to it,” Niboro said.

Niboro said Nigeria’s stability is not threatened because of the recent spate of terror-related bombings in the country.

“Nigeria’s stability is not threatened. Terrorism is a new global trend. It happens in some of the major cities in the world. It happens in New York; it happens in London; it happens in Paris. So, it’s not about the stability of a country. It’s about terrorism,” Niboro said.

He said part of the measures President Jonathan will be announcing will include the setting up of committees for greater public enlightenment of security issues.

He said investigators looking into the increased violence will determine whether it has any relationship to the upcoming election.

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