By Joe Nwankwo (Abuja),Oyeniran Apata (Lagos), Abdulkareem Haruna, (Maiduguri) Dele Moses (Ilorin) and Baba Negedu (Kaduna)
Princess Alexandra (right), Prince Richard, and Nigeria's acting High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Dozie Nwanna, at the presentation of Nigeria’s 50th anniversary gold medal to Alexandra in London. She represented Queen Elizabeth II at Nigeria’s independence celebration on October 1, 1960.
Our target is Aso Rock, the federal seat of power, Boko Haram Spokesman, Abu Zaid, declared in a daring telephone press conference in Maiduguri on Wednesday, during which the sect claimed responsibility for bank robberies and attacks on the Joint Task Force (JTF).
But Zaid denied that the Islamic jidhadists threatened to attack the University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID).
“God forbid! We don’t do our things like that. What problems do we have with the University of Maiduguri?" he clarified.
"It is belittling on our side to attack university students when our targets are places like Aso Rock and other high profile places in Abuja."
“In this battle we will not relent until the signs of Allah shine on all his servants in this country. Sharia will not trample on any body’s right or freedom.
"Sharia will even protect the rights of the non-Muslims more than the so-called constitution."
Zaid, who booked for the interview in a mobile telephone conference, said although sect members sympathise with the women and children traumatised in the conflict, they will not retreat from the battle until “the religion of Allah is established across the land and the government of unjust people is done away with."
He admitted that Boko Haram has carried out two bank robberies because banks support the cause that contravenes the injunctions of Islam.
Zaid, who spoke mainly in Hausa, demanded the withdrawal of soldiers from the streets, accusing them of attacking ordinary citizens “who are killed, raped or made to flee their own homes."
He said Boko Haram robbed banks because "the banking system in Nigeria does not allow small depositors of between N20,000 and N100,000 to bear the loss of a failed bank, rather it is the government or the top management of the banks that bear the losses.
"Anybody who knows the operations of the banks will realise that we are not touching the poor people's money, and Islam has obligated us to do so.
"So big banks like Bank PHB, Unity Bank and First Bank fall under the banks we will continue to attack, Insha Allah.
“We are calling on the government to withdraw soldiers from Borno State immediately and stop making life difficult for the poor women and children.
"Before the soldiers were brought to the state, there were no cases of killing of innocent citizens; we only concentrate on soldiers, the police and the gulty politicians who waged war against us in the first place.
"Let them leave the town because they will only continue to make innocent people suffer."
On Wednesday, Kaduna and Kwara became the latest states to evacuate their indigenes from Maiduguri and other parts of Borno that is in thrall to Boko Haram’s impunity, which takes the lives of the young and the old in its quest for an Islamic domain, where Sharia law reigns supreme.
Five South West states – Lagos, Ondo, Ekiti, Oyo, and Osun – had in April and May evacuated their indigenes serving in the National Youths Service Corps (NYSC) in Borno, as they were targets of attacks in the election in which they served as Electoral Officers.
NYSC Director General, Brig-General Muharazu Tsiga, has also ordered the deployment of 1,753 Batch ‘B’ corps members from Borno to other states, but none will be posted to his or her state of origin.
Tsiga announced the redepolyment in his address to corps members at the Maiduguri orientation camp on Biu Road on Wednesday.
He said the relocation is to protect their lives and property.
The only exceptions are NYSC members who are Borno indigenes and others who opt to stay.
All the corps members affected are to apply after a two-week break granted to prepare for their relocation.
A statement issued in Kaduna by Governor Patrick Yakowa’s Media and Publicity Assistant, Reuben Buhari, said 15 buses have been sent to evacuate the state’s indigenes from the University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID).
“While sympathising with the Borno State Government over the unfortunate security challenges we hope and pray for a speedy return of peace to the state and indeed the entire country,” the statement added.
Kwara dispatched 40 buses to bring home its indigenes from UNIMAID.
Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Isiaka Gold, in Ilorin implored the drivers and other government officials attached to the buses to ensure the students were safely transported.
Also on Wednesday, five police officers suspected in the murder in July 2009 of Boko Haram leader, Mohammerd Yusuf, were arraigned at the Abuja High Court.
Their trial was, however, stalled following the directive of the court for the charge sheets to be consolidated since all the accused persons were charged with the same offence.
Justice Donatus Okorowo gave the directive after the introduction of Sergeant Adamu Gado as an accused person to join four others brought on a different charge sheet.
The other suspects are Assistant Chief Superintendents of Police (ACPs) J. B Abang, B. Akera, and Adamu Buba, and Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) Mohammed Ahmadu.
The charge sheet alleged that:
• Abang, Akeera, Ahmadu, Buba, Gado, Anthony Samuel, and Linus Luka all of the Maiduguri police command, on or about July 30, 2009 unlawfully killed Yusuf and his followers, an offence under Section 315 of the Criminal Code, a terrorist act punishable under Section 15 (1) (2) of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Act.
The case was adjourned until July 21.
Yusuf, born on January 29 1970 in Girgir village in Yobe State, founded Boko Haram in 2002 and remained its spiritual leader until he was killed in police custody in Maiduguri in 2009.
He had four wives and 12 children.
The trial of his killers is one of the conditions given by Boko Haram for dialogue with Abuja.
Boko Haram: We Rob Banks For 'the Religion of Allah'...
In: Regional News
Tags: islam, muslims, jihad, attacks, murderers, lies, allah, quran, evil, muhammad, koran, qur'an, darkness, ignorance, boko haram, nigeria,
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