President Goodluck Jonathan has explained how the activities of the violent Islamic sect, Boko Haram, have restricted his movement and prevented him from going to wherever he loves.
According to PUNCH, the President made this statement on Friday, 27 June, 2014, during his visit to the scene of the bomb explosion that occurred at Emab Plaza in Abuja.
It was reported that Mr. Jonathan hurriedly returned to the country on Thursday evening from Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, because of the bomb blast.
The blast at Emab Plaza in Abuja, occurred on Wednesday shortly after the President left Nigeria for the 23rd Ordinary Session of the African Union’s Summit of Heads of State and Government.
* President Jonathan at the scene of bomb blast in Abuja
While at the scene of the explosion, the President implored Nigerians to bear the pains and restrictions that could be imposed on them as security agencies work hard to end insurgency in the country.
Mr. Jonathan stated that as the President of the country, he had been having his fair share of the pains associated with containing the activities of the Boko Haram insurgents as he could not go to everywhere he would have loved to visit.
“We all bear some pains, from the highest to the least because as a President, I may not go to everywhere I would have loved to go, these are some of the challenges I have to face,” he said.
It could be recalled that the President had in May, 2014 called off a visit to Chibok, the town where over 200 schoolgirls were abducted by Boko Haram members on April 14, 2014.
It was gathered that the President briefed at the spot where the bomb went off by an Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Suleiman Abba.
* Scene of bomb blast in Abuja
He was accompanied by the Minister of Health, Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu; his Chief of Staff, Brig.-Gen. Jones Arogbofa; and other senior government officials.
While visiting victims of the bomb blast at the Maitama District Hospital, Jonathan said: “It is quite regrettable and extremely painful that when some Nigerians are struggling, thinking about how to contribute to the nation’s development, they are working very hard to take care of their families, train their children, others are busy planning to kill people, intimidate people, destroy peoples’ property. It is regrettable.
“It is one of the darkest phases in the history of our nation, but surely we will get over it. Some other countries have passed through such cloud before and they were able to overcome it and sail through.
“We share the pains of the people who have been directly affected, the pains of their families, but we will surely pass through this ugly phase of our history. The perpetrators of this, those who are directly involved and those who sponsor them will surely be brought to book.
“I will use this opportunity to continue to plead with our citizens that under such situation, security operatives will come up with different options that sometimes will create some inconvenience for us, instead of condemning them, let us bear.
“Even for our citizens, under such condition, we have reached some level of restrictions and some pains, instead of shouting and insulting security operatives, let us give them maximum cooperation, give them relevant information.
“All countries that face terror suffer the same thing, citizens give maximum cooperation to the security operatives and help to contain and control, surely we will get over this.
“We are all mourning. I remember that very day we had a football match to play and all Nigerians were celebrating the Eagles hoping they were going to win, then this act came up, I was airborne then, it was when I got down in Malabo that I got the information. Surely, we will get through this.”
Prior to the President’s visit, Vice-President Namadi Sambo made similar visit to the scene of the bomb explosion about 24 hours earlier.
It could be recalled that the Nigerian police had confirmed that at least 21 people lost their lives in the bomb explosion.
It was also reported that a suspected member of Boko Haram sect attempted to detonate another Improvised Explosive Device, IED, at EMEB Plaza in Abuja on Wednesday, 26 June, 2014 but the intervention of security agents prevented the attack.