FG Should Start Acting On Intelligence From Security Agencies – Falana
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Femi Falana, on Monday asked the Federal Government to start acting on intelligence from security agencies, especially the Department of State Services following a recent attack on a church in Ondo State.
Gunmen had attacked St Francis Catholic Church in Owo, the headquarters of Owo Local Government Area of Ondo State, killing scores of worshippers while injuring several others. The situation has drawn condemnation from Nigerians, including President Muhammadu Buhari, state governors among others.
In a statement issued a day after the attack, Falana commiserated with the victims and families of the attack.
He said the government must go beyond issuing threats and alerting citizens of imminent attacks.
This is even as he recalled that the Department of State Services (DSS) had on March 20 issued a statement claiming that it had discovered plans to cause violence in parts of the country, particularly in the north-central.
“Exactly nine days later, a group of terrorists attacked the Abuja-Kaduna train, killed over a dozen passengers and injured several others,” he said.
“Once again, on April 26, 2022, the SSS alerted Nigerians on alleged plans by some dangerous elements to launch bomb attacks on critical infrastructure and public places like worship and relaxation centres, especially during and after the festive celebrations.
“As predicted, a group of unmasked armed terrorists stormed the St Francis Catholic Church in Owo, Ondo state where they detonated explosives in the church and then gunned down worshippers during service on Sunday, June 5, 2022.
“After the terrorist attack, the Ondo police command was reported to have deployed officers of the explosive ordinance disposal (EOD) unit, better known as the anti-bomb squad, to Owo local government area.
“As expected, the federal government has condemned the reckless attack on the worshippers and threatened to bring the criminal elements to justice.
“However, governments at all levels must go beyond issuing threats. It is common knowledge that every country involved in the prosecution of war on terror is required to train security personnel and acquire adequate security gadgets to protect the people.
“Therefore, the federal government should ensure that the nation’s airports, trains, buses, courts, schools, malls, churches, mosques, banks and other public places are provided with screening machines and CCTV cameras.
“As a matter of urgency, the federal government and the various state governments should promptly act on intelligence reports compiled by the State Security Service and other security agencies.”