29 January 2013

Nigeria: Mali - Demuren Calls for Enhanced Security Alert At Airports

The Director General of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Dr. Harold Demuren, has called on security operatives at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos to be at alert over possible terror attack that might be carried out due to the ongoing crisis in Mali.

Since Nigeria and other African nations deployed soldiers to the West African country in collaboration with the French army to oust terrorists that took over northern Mali more than a year ago, the terrorists have threatened to carry out terror attacks on countries that provided support to quell the crisis there.

In a closed door meeting with top security operatives at the Lagos airport that included the officials of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), the Nigeria Air Force, the Nigeria Police, the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) and the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), the Director General urged the officials to be at alert and to efficiently carry out their duties so that the anti-progressive forces would not penetrate them and constitute threat to the nation.

Demuren also charged the officials to intensify their scrutiny of passengers and other users of the airport, noting that terrorists could use any guise to access the airport and score tragic and political goals if they were not stopped.

The meeting was also attended by the State Security Service (SSS), the Director of Security, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), the security team from the Nigeria Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), that of the NCAA and the head of the Ministry of External Affairs at the airport.

An insider who was at the meeting said Demuren presided over the meeting of security operatives that are based at the Lagos airport "to take stock in view of the crisis going on in Mali and the threat of attack by al-Qaeda on Nigeria."

The insider said the aviation security team was led by NCAA Security Director, Mr. Joyce Nkem and the Director of External Affairs.

"The DG emphasised the need for all the operatives to be at alert so as not to allow any security breach at the nation's main gateway. Series of security issues were discussed in a meeting that lasted for over three hours," the source disclosed

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