Nabs key members in Lagos, Kano, Plateau, Enugu, Gombe
Department of State Services, DSS said it has arrested notable Boko Haram suspects, including a key commander, linked with several suicide attacks across the country.
The secret police said in a statement yesterday that Usman Shuiabu, known as “Money” and other frontline members of the hard-line group, were picked up in Lagos, Kano, Plateau, Enugu and Gombe states between July and August.
The DSS had on Saturday arrested a 14-year-old boy suspected to be spying on travellers at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.
Presumed spokesman for the service, Mr. Tony Opuiyo, confirmed that its operatives apprehended one Sulaiymon Abdulrahman (a.k.a Sunday Ajayi), a 14-year-old boy from Kogi State, who was monitoring travelers’ movements, passenger screening, boarding procedures and other processes at the departure and arrival halls.
Consequently, the service said it has stepped up security at all airports across the country to frustrate other criminal plots and protect lives and property.
Yesterday, the DSS said the arrest of Shuaibu and other core members of his cell had stemmed the spate of bombings by the extremist sect.
The DSS said its operatives had also frustrated plans by the insurgents to attack the financial capital of Lagos.
“The sudden influx of Boko Haram members into Lagos state points to the determination of the sect to extend its nefarious terrorist activities to the state and in fact, other parts of the country,” it said.
“The arrest of these confessed terrorist elements has however helped in no small measure to avert devastating attacks in the area,” it added.
The DSS said it would continue to work with other stakeholders in the fight against Boko Haram extremists as a regional 8,700-strong force aimed at ending the insurgency is due to deploy within days.
Opuiyo revealed that on August 24, DSS operatives, in liaison with NAIA aviation security, arrested Abdulrahman who confessed that he infiltrated the airport with the assistance of one Dauda Sadiq (a.k.a Peter) who is presently at large.
Abdulrahman further revealed that Sadiq directed him to spy on the installation and pass to him information in respect of travelers’ movements, boarding procedures and other processes at the airport.
“With this knowledge, the service is working closely with major aviation stakeholders, especially the Aviation Security Department, to forestall any possible attack and to ensure adequate security at the airports.
“This is aside other measures which have been put in place to ensure protection of lives and property across the country,” the DSS stated.
The service reminded the public to remain vigilant and patriotic by being security-conscious at all times.
It further urged them to report all issues and suspicious persons to the nearest security agency.
“The public is further enjoined to assist with information that could be useful in stamping out insecurity with a view to making Nigeria safe.”
“Of particular note was the arrest on 8th July, 2015 in Gombe state of those responsible for the coordination and execution of the suicide attacks in Potiskum, Kano, Zaria and Jos,”.
“Shuaibu admitted being the leader of the team of nine sect members that was dispatched from Sambisa Forest to carry out the attacks. He disclosed that four out of the nine of them were used as suicide bombers in executing all the suicide attacks,” DSS said.