Panic Trails South-South Economic Summit Over Fear Of Boko Haram

Trepidation may overwhelm the much talked about South-South Economic Summit billed to be hosted by Delta state, as the state government has raised an alarm over plans by the extremist Islamist sect, Boko Haram to attack noticeable persons.

The security alert raised by the Secretary to the Delta state Government (SSG), Comrade Ovuozourie Marcaulay, on behalf of the Delta state government, is coming on the heels of advanced preparation for the South-South Economic Summit scheduled for April 26-28, 2012 in Asaba, Delta State.

The Summit, expected to be declared open by President Goodluck Jonathan will attract global business and leading colossuses, investors, professionals and top government functionaries from within and outside Nigeria.

Among those intended to grace the event are Dr. Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda; Rudy Giuliani, former Mayor of New York; Admiral Mike Mullen, the 17th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the United States and Professor John Lipsky, first Deputy Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

But the recent security alert by the Delta state government, according to Blank NEWS Online checks have caused panic among organisers and participants at the forthcoming regional Economic Summit.

Although, security has been beefed up in Asaba, the state capital, police personnel have intensified efforts at notable flashpoint areas across the state.

The statement titled, “A Call For Security Vigilance In The Face Of Noticeable Threats From Extremist Groups” and signed by the Secretary to the state Government (SSG), Comrade Ovuozourie Marcaulay, on behalf of the Delta state government, reads:

“The Delta state government wishes to intimate the members of the general public that credible intelligence report at its disposal indicate that the Islamist terrorist sect, Boko Haram has put in place plans to kidnap and/or assassinate noticeable persons within the state. Their mode of operation is to sponsor their agents to infiltrate every part of the state.

“The Delta state government takes seriously such intelligence report in the face of the antecedents of the Boko Haram terrorist sect and other extremist groups.

“In the foregoing regards, members of the general public are advised to screen and monitor every private security guard engaged either in houses or work places. Such screening should equally extend to even those you have long been acquainted to ensure that such persons have not inculcated in the meanwhile, the teachings of extremism. By the same token, members of the public are advised to be circumspect  in dealing with artisans who, on the face value, may appear innocent but deep down are Islamic fundamentalists.

“The Delta state government wishes to warn, however, that the greatest security consciousness required of every citizenry is to be extra vigilant and promptly report any suspicious person(s) or strange parcels to law enforcement agencies for quick response.

“In the meanwhile, the Delta state government wishes to restate her commitment to the preservation of lives and property of everyone within the state and assures all, whether indigenes or not, of its unwavering commitment to ensuring the security of all.”

Meanwhile, spokesman for the BRACED Commission, organisers of the South South Economic Summit and delta state Commissioner for Information, Barr. Chike Ogeah told Blank NEWS Online at a Press briefing, Monday, that they are on top of security issues as a result of the Summit.

News Reporter
Blank NEWS Online founding Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, Albert Eruorhe Ograka, is a Graduate of Mass Communication. He also holds a Post Graduate Diploma (PGD) in Journalism from the International Institute of Journalism (IIJ).

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