…..Jonathan, Tambuwal, Tinubu Condemn Blasts
…..DSS confirms Buhari, Islamic cleric as target
Former Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari whose convoy was the target of the second bomb blast in Kaduna Wednesday has described the incident as an attempt to assassinate him.
Buhari, in a statement he personally signed gave clear insights of the blast targeted at him in Kaduna
He said: “I was personally involved in a clearly targeted bomb attack today along Ali AkiluRoad, Kawo Kaduna at about 2:30pm on my way to Daura.
“The unfortunate event, clearly an assassination attempt, came from a fast moving vehicle that made many attempts to overtake my security car but was blocked by my escort vehicle.
“We reached the market area of Kawo where he took advantage of our slowing down and attempted to ram my car and instantly detonated the bomb which destroyed all the three cars in our convoy.
“Unfortunately, when I came out of my vehicle I saw many dead bodies littered around. They were innocent people going about their daily business who became victims of mass murder
“Thank God for His mercy,I came out unhurt but with three of my security staff sustaining minor injuries-they have since been treated in hospital and discharged.”
Department of State Security (DSS) spokesperson and member of the National Information Centre (NIC) Marilyn Ogar confirmed the incident involving the cleric at a briefing by the NIC in Abuja .
“Of course you know that Imam Shehu Dahiru Bauchi holds annual Ramadan prayers. Now, we don’t want to be too forward because his convoy missed being hit by the whiskers and of course, we don’t want to be presumptuous also by saying it was targeted at him. So, investigation is still ongoing,” she said.
It was the second time during the on-going Ramadan that Bauchi would be targeted by the terrorists with the first attack foiled just a few days into the fasting month when the bomb detonated on the way to his house.
She explained that the explosion that took place in Kaduna about two kilometres from the venue of a Ramadan prayer session organised by Imam Bauchi because “the insurgents could not move the vehicle closer because there was heavy security presence.
“Unfortunately, the whole prayer section has come to an end and people have dispersed, they were moving out of the Muritala Square, the bomber had packed the vehicle close to where other vehicles were packed and there was a limit to which they can go further.”
Earlier, Coordinator of NIC, Mike Omeri had disclosed that 25 persons were reported dead and 14 others sustained injuries and were already receiving treatment with security forces and emergency workers mobilised in the area.
He also said that a few hours after, “as we are about coming in here, we heard that another explosion also occurred in the same Kaduna around Kawo area.”
PRNigeria gathered that the second explosion at Kawo area where a big market and motor parks are located also narrowly missed the vehicular convoy of Major general Muhammadu Buhari but killed at least 14 persons.(Other reports said about 60 people were killed in the Kawo blast.
Ogar appealed to Nigerians to continue to be vigilant as security agents cannot be present everywhere.
“We have always said that we as citizens take a little bit of time to look around us. Double packing in any place should not be condoned and of course because of the nature of the work you won’t expect that the security people be at everywhere and that is why we are asking the citizens to contribute their own quota. As a preacher, if you know that there is somebody in your congregation that does not tolerate any form of evil in the society, you must be conscious.
“I want to tell you that there is no way a vehicle laden with explosives will drive from Abuja to Kaduna. These people bring these in thing in tiny components and coupled them before moving them and most times they would have done a survey of the roads they are going to pass through especially when it is not a suicide mission. Like in this particular case, the bomb was laden in a J5 and was remotely detonated. We must be conscious of our environment, get to know who your neighbour is, get to know what the next man is doing. Be vigilant,”, she warned
President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has condemned “the bombings in Kaduna (Wednesday) which appeared to have targeted former Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari and prominent Islamic Cleric, Sheikh Dahiru Bauchi.
Presidentia;l Spokesman,Reuben Abati said “ President Jonathan denounces the dastardly targeting of the prominent political and religious leaders by terrorists and enemies of the nation in an odious attempt to inflame passions and exacerbate disquiet, fear, insecurity and sectional divisions in the country.
“While thanking God Almighty for sparing the lives of General Buhari and Sheikh Dahiru Bauchi, the President extends sincere condolences to the families of those who were sadly killed by the bomb blasts.
President Jonathan also commiserated with all those who were injured in the twin bombings in this Holy Month of Ramadan which defy the tenets of Islam, and provide further proof that the terrorists are nothing but blood-thirsty extremists bent on undermining the unity and progress of the nation. This, he alluded, showed they are not Muslims.
The President assured residents of Kaduna and all other Nigerians that the Federal Government will continue and further intensify its ongoing efforts to effectively curb the menace of terrorism in the country.
He has specifically directed the Police and other national security agencies to take all necessary actions to apprehend the perpetrators of today’s attacks on Kaduna and urges all residents of the city to give them the fullest possible cooperation and support as they work to bring the terrorists to justice.
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, has also described the twin blasts which rocked the city of Kaduna Wednesday as cruel, barbaric and heinous crime.
According to him, the targeting of prominent persons as seen from the blasts is both regrettable and condemnable.
In a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Malam Imam Imam, Tambuwal said killing of innocent persons cannot be justified under any guise, adding that whoever is behind the Kaduna incidents should be pursued and brought to justice.
While thanking God that the apparent targets of the attacks, General Muhammadu Buhari and Sheikh Dahiru Usman Bauchi, have escaped unhurt, Tambuwal expressed sadness over the loss of innocent lives.
“Our sympathy and condolences are with the families of the victims of the blast. Their loved ones did not die in vain,” he added.
The Speaker prayed for the quick recovery of those injured or traumatised by the dastardly acts.
Also, former governor of Lagos State and chieftain of APC,Bola Ahmed Tinubu has said “the multiple bomb attack today on General Buhari, one of the national leaders of the All Progressives Congress, APC, and innocent Nigerians confirms that our county is In the grip of terror. Sadly, we are in the hands of a bungling, buck passing and blackmailing presidency.
He said “I condemn in the strongest terms the attack on General Buhari and his convoy. And the innocent Nigerians that suffered untimely deaths. I thank God that Gen. Buhari’s life was spared for greater service to the fatherland. Under an increasingly incompetent and incoherent PDP- government, Nigeria slips into a low intensity war. We are all marked people under a government that prefers to label and attack opposition rather than apply itself to providing security and good governance.
“Today’s multiple attacks are a bad omen that signposts a future filled with danger and uncertainty.
“Unfortunately, Nigeria is saddled with a leadership totally intolerant of ideas, suggestions and advice that do not emanate from them. We in the APC has put forward concrete suggestions which have been consistently rejected and snared at by the PDP led Jonathan government.
“Instead of reaching out and paying attention to our suggestions, they have turned the guns on us and are manipulating and doctoring reports and stories to label us. It is a label that is false. It is a label that will not stick. We are patriots and stand united against anyone who wants to do this great country harm.
“This government has raised the art of scapegoating to a new level. Rather than govern, they have politicized everything to the detriment of Nigerians and Nigeria.
“There can be no justification for the continued loss of innocent lives and the unending attacks. I call upon those with the power, the resources and in charge of the security apparatus of this country to get up and do something before we all are consumed”.