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Kuje Prison Attack: Nigeria’s Interior Minister Lampoons Security for Failing to Repel Terrorists

Nigeria’s Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, was harsh on security men deployed to protect the Kuje Prison.

Rauf Aregbesola

Nigeria’s Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, was harsh on security men deployed to protect the Kuje Prison before Tuesday’s attack by Boko Haram, describing them as men that could not hold their ground despite the amount of fortification they had.

Aregbesola who undertook a tour of the facility to assess the level of the attack by the terrorist group, said he cannot just describe what happened at the custodial facility in the open.

He said: “We have a world class facility here by any standard. I am disappointed with the level of defence. We had enough men to protect this facility but unfortunately they couldn’t hold their position effectively for defence and that was the reason for the breach.

“Now my position is so clear, I have declared since April last year that all our facilities are red zones and that whoever attempt an attack must not live to tell the story. I still maintain this.

“Kuje is the most fortified in the country if fortification for security is the determinant of whether it is medium or maximum, it is medium by size but maximum by the security being put there. We have a platoon of security officers deployed here.

“We have the high grade of military and police and other security forces deployment for protection but strangely something happened most of which I cannot say on camera.”

The Minister added that: “I want to believe those who escaped can only run but cannot hide. It is very regrettable that this happened. Let’s put it in context, the nation was experiencing asymmetric warfare. Yes, the insurgents have been degraded in the North East of Nigeria, 61,000 of them are in our custody in the North East, the effect of the effectiveness itself in degrading them in the North East is what we are experiencing.”

He however said: “As sad as it is, we must put behind whatever is happening in the context of this warfare unleashed on the nation by this criminal elements and we will rise to it, that’s the assurance I want to give to Nigerians.
“As I said, if deployments is the basis of security, Kuje was as at Tuesday heavily fortified.”

Michael Olugbode in Abuja

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