Boko Haram suspect confesses: ‘We were sent to bomb Lagos Airport’ •How the attempt failed

Posted by News Express | 19 August 2014 | 7,094 times

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The Boko Haram suspect arrested yesterday at the National Airport Management Authority (NAMA) annex in Lagos confessed last night that he was sent along with other members of the terrorist group to Lagos to bomb various parts of the city.

The physically challenged 22-year-old suspect who was caught with canisters around his neck, in his confession, told security operatives that his two other colleagues were assigned the task of bombing Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA), as well as the densely populated Lagos Island and Apapa areas of the megacity.

THISDAY quotes a security source as saying that the suspect (name withheld) had confessed that he alongside several others were recruited from Niger Republic and were trained extensively before their deployment.

“He also said the plot to bomb Lagos would not be simultaneously done, a clear deviation from the planned simultaneous attacks last year March, when the sect tried to bomb various designated places across the state at the same time,” according to THISDAY.

The paper quotes a security official as saying that the attempt would have been successful but for the inability of the explosives to detonate when they were supposed to.

The source is quoted as saying: “He was caught because when he tried to set off the explosives, there was a hitch. He ran back to an obscure place to check it out and fix it.

“His suspicious movement and the frustration evident on his face aroused the suspicion of security operatives attached to NAMA.”

The suspect was arrested at the NAMA annex facility, known as CENTREX, about 300 metres from the international terminal of the airport, opposite the airport cathedral.

The suspect attracted attention to himself by making frantic phone calls, looking frustrated and restless. His mannerism and slovenly conduct aroused the suspicion of security personnel who were watching him and subsequently arrested him. He was taken to the MMIA police station at Beesam Junction. A police officer described the device found on the suspect as locally made explosives.

Reacting to the incident, the General Manager, Public Affairs of NAMA, Supo Atobatele, said the suspect was within the vicinity of the airport making phone calls along the Airport Road when the agency’s security personnel accosted him.

He said his incoherent explanation aroused further suspicion, especially with the suspicious looking canisters on his person. According to Atobatele in a statement:

“The attention of NAMA has been drawn to insinuations that a suspected suicide bomber was arrested at one of the agency’s facilities at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, on Monday.

“The basic truth however is that the said suspect was on the ground making phone calls along the Airport Road close to CENTREX, an annex office of NAMA, when the agency’s security personnel accosted him.

“His incoherent explanation exposed him to the security personnel who later found on him some devices suspected to be explosives. He was subsequently handed over to the Airport Police Command for further investigation.

“The Managing Director, Ibrahim Abdulsalam, in reaction, commended the security personnel for their vigilance and prompt arrest of the suspect.”

The suspect, who wore brown shorts and a white T-shirt, was prevented from speaking to reporters about his mission to the airport.

•Photo shows the suspected would-be bomber of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos.

Source: News Express

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