We know sponsors of bomb blasts- Jonathan
President Goodluck Jonathan said yesterday that government knows the
sponsors of the recurrent explosions in the country.
He said government has uncovered what he called “strong leads” to the terrorists
and those behind them.
The president said he has therefore directed security agenicies to begin a man
hunt for the alleged sponsors, saying there would be no “sacred cows” in the “war
President Jonathan, who spoke at the launch of the new National Drivers Licence
and vehicle number plates in Abuja, also paid N6000 to obtain his new drivers’
He warned those visiting death and destruction on innocent Nigerians and their
sponsors that there is “no hiding place” for them anymore.
Jonathan said: “Today’s launch has acquired greatest significance following last
Friday’s unprovoked attack which led to the loss of lives and has left in its trail
gory images of the threat which terrorism now poses to the peace and security of
our nation and the safety of our citizens.
“Since the last bombing episode on October 1, I had directed the hastening of
efforts to build a credible data base of drivers and vehicles in order to improve
public safety. The importance of this project is reaffirmed by the consistent use of
vehicles in the conduct of the recent bombing episode.
“Let me use this occasion to reassure Nigerians and members of the international
community that we now have strong leads as to those involved in this terror war
on Nigeria and Nigerians. I have directed security operatives to go after them no
matter where they may be hiding.
“Also, I am using this opportunity to warn that those who choose to hide under
our new freedom to perpetuate evil against our people shall have no hiding
This administration, according to the President, is fully determined and able to
deal with all threats and agents of instability who continue to test the resolve of
our nation and its democratic institutions and leadership.
“As President and Chief Security Officer of the nation, I will employ every means
and instruments at my disposal to secure this nation against forces of evil which
seek to divide and sabotage our country,” Jonathan said.
He added: “There shall be no sacred cows in our efforts to expose, contain and
defeat this network of terror. I have directed the review of our national security
architecture to lay greater emphasis on intelligence and citizens’ participation in
An explosion went off at the United Nations (UN) House in Abuja penultimate
Friday, killing at least 23 people and injuring scores of others.
In June, another blast rocked the Police Headquarters also in Abuja.
There was controversty over the casualty figure, but a traffic warden was
officially confirmed dead in that attack.
The Boko Haram (‘Western education is sin’) sect claimed responsibility for both
The State Security Service (SSS) early in the week arrested and detained two
suspects – Babagana Ismail (aka Abu Summaya) and Babagana Mali (aka
Bulama) – in connection with the UN building bombing.
Another suspect, Mamman Nur, an al-Qaeda- trained Boko Haram member,
alleged to be the brain behind the explosion, has been declared wanted.
On Thursday, the fundamentalist group named 27-year-old Mohammed Abdul
as the suicide bomber who drove the explosive-laden Honda Accord Car that
rammed into the UN House.
Before extending its operation to the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Boko
Haram had been engaged in series of killings and attacks in Borno, Bauchi and
some other northern states.
Jonathan said yesterday that government was pleased “that the Federal Road
Safety Corps (FRSC) has delivered in its promise to introduce a credible driver’s
licence that meets international standard.”
He described the launch of the new enhanced driver’s licence and number plates
by the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) as a “positive development which
demonstrates the FRSC’s commitment to the government’s transformation
agenda and testimony that we can get it right in this country.”
He added: “Restoring the integrity of the driver’s licence allies fully with the
transformation agenda of this government. It is at the heart of the efforts to alter
a culture of recklessness, impunity and lack of consideration for other road users
and to transform these negative traits to a positive affirmation of a rule driven
According to him, the international dimension of driver’s licences and number
plates imposes on Nigeria as a country the need to ensure that they are not used
as instruments of terrorism.
He spoke further: “I want to reassure Nigerians and members of the international
community that terror groups would be defeated in our land. This administration
will spare no effort or resource in containing these latest threats to the unity and
stability of our nation.
“Terrorism has no conscience, it spares no one. We must all stand together
against terror and its destructive manifestations. We are in touch with all
international agencies involved in the global war against terror. We work in
tandem with all organisations and partners towards a timely and eventual
containment and defeat of terror and their sponsors in our land.”
The Corps Marshal and Chief Executive of the FRSC, Osita Chidoka, said the new
drivers licence and number plates would play three significant roles in the polity,
namely, enhanced enforcements of road traffic rules, track drivers’ behavioural
patterns, and help in national security.
He also revealed that all driver’s licences and number plate now in use have up
till August 31, 2012 to change to the new ones.
He said the new driver’s licence now costs 6,000, while the vehicle number plates
would cost N15, 000 for private car owners.
Chidoka said: “Today (yesterday) is the beginning of our quest to restore the
integrity of the driver’s licence. It is a culmination of the work we have done with
the support of the media very strongly to re-educate Nigerians and to bring back
the integrity of the driver’s licence. One of the critical ingredients of this is that
we are going to have a credible data base of drivers and vehicles in Nigeria.
“One of the significant changes to the plate number system in Nigeria today is
that plate numbers are now attached to individuals and not to vehicles. That
is to say, if you sell your vehicle, you are under obligation to return those plate
numbers and make sure that the new person gets a fresh registration to ensure
that we have a credible data base of who owns what vehicle at every time and we
are linking the vehicle plate numbers to the drivers licence.
“So, we will have a credible data base of easily calling up that. Now that would
help us in three critical things. The new drivers licence and plate numbers would
help us first in enforcement, develop patterns of the behaviour of the drivers, and
help in area of national security.”
Dignitaries present at the launch which took place at the headquarters of the
FRSC in Abuja, included the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT),
Senator Bala Mohammed, Minister of Police Affairs, Caleb Olubolade, Minister of
Information and Communications, Labaran Maku, Inspector General of Police,
Hafiz Ringim, the Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mrs
Ifueko Omoigui-Okauru, among others.