Buhari’s advice comes as the security warning continues to intensify, even as the US Government ordered its non-emergency diplomatic staff and their families to leave Abuja immediately.
What the Presidency said
President Muhammadu Buhari directed security agencies and Nigerian citizens to stay alert and desist from panicking. He said the recent travel advisories from the US and UK governments should not be a cause for panic. His media aid quoted him to have said:
“President Muhammadu advises the nation’s security establishment and entire citizens to continue being vigilant and careful with security, saying it is important to avoid panic.”
“Nigeria is no exception in having terror threats listed in foreign government’s travel advice to their citizens. UK and US travel advisories also state there is a high likelihood of terror attacks in many Western European nations.
“Indeed, the UK and US advice to their respective citizens for travel to one another’s countries contain the same warning. Unfortunately, terror is a reality the world over.
“However, it does not mean an attack in Abuja is imminent. Since the July prison raid, security measures have been reinforced in and around the FCT. Heightened monitoring and interception of terrorist communications ensure potential threats are caught further upstream.”
The President added that the safety of Nigerians remains a top priority for his government. He said the government is on top of the security situation in the country even as security services are working around the clock to keep harm at bay.
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What you should know
Earlier in the week, Nairametrics reported that the US and UK governments issued travel advisories warning their citizens about possible terrorist attacks at restaurants, schools, churches and other public places across Abuja.
Following this warning, the US Government ordered its non-emergency diplomatic staff and their families to leave Abuja.
Although the US State Department did not specify the nature of the threat, it explained that the US Embassy in Abuja will continue to operate at a limited capacity, providing only emergency assistance to its citizens in Nigeria.