Before Sunday’s advisory by US Embassy in Nigeria, security forces had been working hard to avert severe attacks on Abuja and its environs by terrorists loyal to Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), an investigation by Daily Trust revealed.
Credible security sources said many terrorists and their collaborators who have been mapping and strategising on how to launch multiple attacks to attract global attention had been arrested in Abuja and neighbouring communities.
The sources said the advisory issued by the US Embassy in Abuja on Sunday was to emphasise the obvious truth that Boko Haram terrorists and other criminal elements have established several cells, especially in the outskirts of Abuja.
They said the terrorists were receiving “guidance” from their superiors living within and outside Nigeria on how to perfect “the massive onslaught on the symbol of authority” to prove that they were still strong and could attack anywhere.
It was learnt that their influx into Abuja was sequel to massive aerial reconnaissance and ground operations by Nigerian troops in the far northern Borno bordering Chad, Niger and Cameroon and the Alagarno and Sambisa forests in North East, as well as bombardments in forested areas in parts of Kaduna, Katsina and Zamfara states all in North West that led to the destruction of many cells and bonkers of the terrorists.
The US Embassy in Nigeria had warned Americans in the country to be cautious of their movement in response to what it called “elevated risk of terror attacks in Nigeria, specifically in Abuja,” following the infiltration of the Boko Haram operatives.
In the security alert issued on Sunday, the US advised its citizens to avoid all non-essential travels or movements, stay alert and avoid crowds.
Daily Trust reports that about two weeks ago, two high-profile terrorists were located at the Tipper garage, along the Kubwa Express Road by Jahi District and security operatives put them on their radar.
And on Thursday, October 20, one Abubakar Dan Borno, an ISWAP kingpin who fled from the Sambisa Forest, was picked at Mararaba, a suburb of Abuja in Nasarawa State after days of trailing. The suspect was reportedly handed over to the military and taken to the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) for interrogation.