By Okodili Ndidi, Eric Ikhilae and Tony Akowe, Abuja
Bodies of Capt, Lt., others found
Bello mourns with families, residents
Two officers and six soldiers attached to the Guards Brigade were killed in the Sunday ambush by terrorists in Bwari, a suburb of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Their bodies, according to a Brigade’s internal Situation Report (Sitrep), have been found.
The Sitrep sighted yesterday by The Nation, gave the names of the two officers simply as Captain Samuel and Lt. Jauro.
The report titled: “Ambush Against own Troops of Gds Brde,” was silent on the names of the others.
It reads: “(Capt Samuel and Lt Jauro ) x 6 KIA. Their bodies were found this evening.”
The report confirmed that three soldiers were injured.
The wounded, according to the report, were evacuated to the NAOWA hospital in Abuja for treatment.
The report added that the terrorists were “within Bwari and possibly to carry out their plans of attacking the (Nigerian) Law School in Bwari as earlier reported.”
Before The Nation sighted the report, the Brigade had said it lost only three of its members to the attack that happened along the Kubwa-Bwari Road.
It dismissed reports that five soldiers were whisked away by the terrorists.
“No soldier was abducted. We only had three casualties and they were evacuated,” the Brigade spokesman, Captain Godfrey Abakpa, said.
Shortly after Abakpa spoke, Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello said: “Two out of the fallen gallant officers” were “illustrious sons” of his state.
Bello, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Muhammed Onogwu, commiserated with the families of the deceased.
The governor described the attack as a “dastardly act and a show of cowardice,” urging “the authorities to expedite actions and ensure the capture of those responsible to forestall any future occurrence.”
Bello said Nigeria’s internal sovereignty must not be at the mercy of criminal elements.
“He also extended his commiseration to the Nigerian Army over the death of some of their finest officers,” the statement said.
According to the statement: “The governor commiserated with the families of the deceased, particularly the father of Lt. Ibrahim Suleiman, Col. Suleiman Babanawa (retd) from Okpo, Olamaboro Local Government and Captain Samuel Attah from Ibaji Local Government Area of the state.”
The deceased operatives were a part of troops deployed in Bwari, following a security report that terrorists planned to attack the ‘Call to Bar’ of the Nigerian Law School billed for today.
Over 800 Law School graduates are to take part in the “low key” ceremony, which has been moved to the Body of Benchers Secretariat in Jabi, also in the FCT.
One of the graduates said: “The venue for the event has been changed. It will no longer hold at the Law School at Bwari.
“We have been told that it will now hold at the Body of Benchers Secretariat in Maitama and we should not invite family members. They said it is going to be a low-key event.”
Wase: 44 security reports before Kuje attack
The Department of State Services (DSS) released at least 44 security reports before terrorists attacked the Kuje Custodial Centre in Abuja on July 5, House of Representatives Deputy Speaker Ahmed Wase disclosed.
Wase said this while ruling on the need to step down a motion seeking a ban of motorcycles (Okada) across the country.
He explained that the DSS reports dwelt on the use of okada by the terrorists to carry out their activities.
Before the motion by Abubakar Makki Yalleman was stepped down, he stressed the need to consider areas that are not vulnerable to security challenges for exemption whenever it deems it necessary to ban okada.
He said: “We should cooperate with the government. We appreciate the motion our brother has brought and we appeal to the government that as they implement this policy, they should look at those areas that are not vulnerable and do not have the potency of having any such insurgency in their community.
“In line with our principle to help to curb the incessant insecurity in our country, we have to cooperate with the government.
“You can’t imagine what’s going on today in Abuja. I went through the SS report; 44 reports were given before the attack on Kuje prison. And it all has to do with this Okada.
“There’s no community where the attack will happen that you don’t have intelligence. So, we have to cooperate with the government”.
The motion by Yalleman wanted the government to restrict the proposed ban to the local government areas where illegal mining, banditry and terrorist activities are taking place.