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Major mall shuts operation in FCT as UK insists on terror alert

The UK government insisted on its terror alert, despite assurances by the federal government that the country was safe.

The fresh alert came as a major mall in the FCT, Jabi Lake Mall, Thursday shuts its operation in what the management said was an effort to protect its staff and customers.

Recall that the UK and US governments had issued an advisory to their citizens in Abuja to watch their movements within the Federal Capital Territory, following the terror alert raised by both countries.

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, FCDO, yesterday again updated its travel advisory on Wednesday, 26 October to British nationals, advising them against all but essential travel to the Federal Capital Territory, including the city of Abuja.

FCDO said there was an increased threat of terrorist attacks in Abuja, and advised British nationals to stay alert, avoid non-essential travel within the city and follow local news and advice of security authorities.

Noting that the travel advice will constantly be reviewed to reflect the current situation in Abuja and Nigeria generally, the FCDO said the British High Commission remains open for essential services.

It also advised British nationals to be wary about travelling to such states as Bauchi, Kano, Jigawa, Niger, Sokoto, Kogi, Abia, Plateau, Taraba, within 20km of the border with Niger in Kebbi State and non-riverine areas of Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers states.

This is even as the Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, also yesterday reclaimed parts of the Nigeria Law School land taken over by criminals in Bwari town, just as most primary schools in the territory announced a mid-term break.

These came as the US Government late Wednesday issued a security alert warning its citizens about the possibility of terror attacks in South Africa, similar to that issued in Nigeria.

A short message from Jabi Lake Mall read: “Jabi Lake Mall will be closed today (yesterday) October 27, 2022. This decision has been taken in the overall interest of the safety of all staff and customers of the mall.

“Centre Management is committed to minimising any disruptions. However, the safety of our staff and shoppers remains our highest priority.

“Management is constantly reviewing the security situation in consultation with relevant security authorities and will inform you when the mall will be re-opened.

“We apologise for any inconvenience caused and hope to provide you with a quality shopping experience soon.”

On the reclamation of the Law School land, Senior Special Assistant on Monitoring, Inspection and Enforcement to the Minister of FCT, Mr Attah Ikharo, who supervised it, said pulling down the shanties was also to tighten security and restore sanity on the route.

He said the exercise is one of the measures adopted to curb insecurity across the territory and will not be limited to the area alone.

The minister’s aide explained that strategic stakeholders in the nation’s capital had asked the sanitation team not to leave any structure constituting threats to the security of lives and property on the Bwari road stretch.

He stated that key security heads in the territory had insisted that Bwari area must be made safe and free of all evil acts.

According to him, the demolition will be a comprehensive one, starting from Bwari Law School, near Kuchiku-Bwari, down to Bwari main market.

“Pulling down the illegal structures here in Bwari is part of our measures to curb insecurity across the territory.

“This area, along the Law School, stretches down to Bwari market, all the attachments and shanties on the road corridor must go. Some persons in Bwari may see it as a lawless place because, for a long, there is no major clean-up. It is not only the Law School area but it is going to be a comprehensive clean up,” he stated.

On his part, the Secretary, of FCTA Command and Control Centre, Peter Olumuji, said the operation is a means of sustaining security measures already put in place by the Police and the FCT administration.

He explained that prior to the removal of the shanties, the areas were used as hideouts by criminals.

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