President, Muhammadu Buhari has directed authorities to tighten security measures in all camps harbouring Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) to guard against the sort of incident that occurred in Yola, Adamawa State on Friday.
At least three persons were killed by a bomb explosion at the Malkohi Internally Displaced Persons’ (IDPs) camp in Nigeria’s north-east region.
It is supposed to be a place of refuge for the IDPs, but the bomb blast that also left at least nine persons injured has created a feeling of uncertainty for them.
The President described the bombing as ‘heinous and cowardly’.
He said that the terrorists were bent on causing fear and panic among the populace by detonating bombs within soft spots where hapless citizens reside.
President Buhari, who has given the military an ultimatum to end the spate of attacks in the north-east region by December 2015, urged the public not to be deterred but “rise in unison to root out whatever was left of the terrorists in our midst”.
“We must not let the desperate and evil-minded criminals have any respite. There’s now an urgent need for all to pay utmost attention to security issues at all levels – home, work, market, places of worship and schools among others.
“To defeat terrorism, all hands must work round the clock, with vigilance. We must provide the country’s security agents with vital information to pre-empt and prevent crimes and to forestall further insurgent activities,” the President added.
Although no group has claimed responsibility for the attack, the Boko Haram terrorists group is believed to be responsible.
Meanwhile, the Adamawa Government confirmed that seven people died and 13 were injured in an explosion that occurred at the Malkohi IDPs camp near Yola, on Friday morning.
The state Commissioner for Information, Malam Ahmad Sajoh, confirmed the incident to newsmen after a visit to the Federal Medical Centre, Yola, where the injured persons were receiving treatment.
Sajoh said four officials of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) were among the injured persons.
He also said that another blast was reported in Madagali, but that the casualty figure was still unknown.
“I just got the report of another blast in Madagali but as I speak to you, I am still trying to get the actual picture of the situation.
“I got the report from officials of the Adamawa State Emergency Management Agency (ADSEMA),” Sajoh said.
He said the state government would foot the bill of all those injured in the Malkohi incident.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that following the Malkohi blast, security operatives have commenced fresh screening of all IDPs at the camp.
All the IDPs where gathered in one section of the camp as policemen, soldiers and other officials of the camp embarked on the screening.
The state Commissioner of Police, Mr Gabriel Adaji, who spoke on the development, said security had been beefed up at the camp to forestall a reoccurrence.
Adaji said it was possible that the persons that came with the explosive that rocked the camp joined the IDPs that were brought to the camp on Thursday night from Madagali.
” We suspect one of those IDPs that came newly, possibly they beat the security checks to cause this mayhem.
” It is unfortunate. We are now trying our best to see that such incident does not happen again,” he said.
The NEMA Camp Coordinator in Adamawa, Mr Saad Bello, confirmed that a total of 298 IDPs from Madagali and 17 from Sambisa forest were brought to the camp on Thursday night. – Additional report from NAN.