Udora Orizu in Abuja
Following a recent report that Boko Haram may attack the National Assembly complex, the House of Representatives has called for the urgent need to overhaul and intensify the security system at National Assembly.
The House had consequently called on the management of the National Assembly to evolve the installation of CCTV cameras and modern scanning systems at the gates and strategic points of the National Assembly complex.
The lawmakers also mandated the National Assembly management to introduce screening, registration and issuance of identity cards to vendors who conduct businesses within the National Assembly complex.
The House reached these resolutions after unanimously adopting a motion by Hon. Shehu Barwa Beji titled: ‘Calling for the Need to Urgently Overhaul and Intensify the National Assembly Security System’, at the plenary yesterday.
Presenting the motion, Beji said the House was aware of a recent report in Daily Trust newspaper of 13 February, 2020, which indicated that Boko Haram terrorists may attack the National Assembly according to intelligence report gathered by the management.
He recalled that barely few months ago, precisely at the end of 2019, the National Assembly complex was attacked by certain resented religious group culminating in the loss of lives and property.
The lawmaker noted that given the previous attack under reference, the security apparatus of the National Assembly is obviously below the threshold required for its protection.
He expressed worries that any terrorist attack on an institution like the National Assembly would be an international eyesore on Nigerian democracy, adding that persons from different areas, including innocent school children, who officially visit the National Assembly could be affected by any ugly event as such.
Beji said: “According to the intelligence report, strange persons have been around the National Assembly complex, and when confronted at the gate of the complex, they were quick to claim being constituents of lawmakers either at the Senate or House of Representatives.
“We concerned that in the face of the facelessness of terrorists, the security apparatus of the National Assembly and its environs require total overhaul. The cooperation of honorable colleagues and distinguished senators is imperative in this circumstance given the fact on influx of strangers to the complex.”
Beji, while commending the Intelligence Unit of the National Assembly for gathering the information at hand, however, said more strategies need to be evolved to prevent any attack on the National Assembly.