The Department of State Services (DSS) has raised the alarm over planned terrorist attacks before and during the upcoming Eid-el-Kabir celebrations.
As Nigerian Muslims are gearing up for the Sallah celebrations on Wednesday, June 28, 2023, the DSS said reports at its disposal indicated that plans are afoot by terrorists to attack worship and recreational centres.
This was contained in a statement issued by the spokesperson of the Service, Peter Afunanya, on Thursday, June 22, 2023.
Afunanya said the latest recovery of primed Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) from suspected terrorists during a joint operation by the Service and its sister security agencies lent credence to the reports.
He, therefore, urged members of the public, including operators of malls among other public places, to be vigilant and not hesitate to report any suspicious movement to security agencies.
“On its part, the DSS calls for vigilance prior to the Eid celebrations more so that reports had indicated plans to attack worship and recreational centres before and during the festivities.
“This is evident in the recovery of primed IEDs among the suspected terrorists. Operators and patrons of public places including markets, malls etc are advised to be watchful and report any suspicious movements and persons to the relevant security agencies.
“Accordingly, the Service will continue to partner with sister agencies for necessary proactive drills to frustrate criminals and their activities,” the statement read in part.
The Service also stated that it carried out raids on criminal hideouts in Kogi and Nasarawa states on Monday in collaboration with the Nigerian Army and the Nigeria Police Force.
The joint operation, which lasted three days, led to the elimination of a wanted gang leader identified as Kabir Bala, who was killed during a gun duel in Kogi.
Afunanya also stated that items recovered at the scene were one AK47 rifle with three fully loaded magazines, six locally-fabricated weapons, and two phones and charms.
“A joint security team comprising the DSS, Nigerian Army, and Police carried out operations in Nasarawa and Kogi States. On June 19, 2023, along the Abuja- Keffi Expressway in Keffi LGA of Nasarawa State, the team apprehended Abubakar Muhammad (aka Abu Direba), a suspected gunrunner.
“During the operation, the team seized the following insidious items: 486 rounds of 7.62 x39mm calibre ammunition;22 primed IEDs; N31,500 and One Volkswagen Golf vehicle with registration number- RBC202XA.
“Also, in another joint operation in the early hours of today, June 22, 2023, a team raided the hideout of Kabir Bala (aka Okwo), one-time jailbreaker and notorious gang leader in Ejule, Ofu LGA of Kogi State.
“Okwo and his gang members engaged the troops in a gun duel during which he was neutralised. Others, however, fled the area. Items recovered at the scene were one AK47 rifle with three fully loaded magazines, six locally fabricated weapons, two phones, and charms,”the statement added.