Thisday office bombings: Ignoble, misguided, horrendous and wicked.”, says Jonathan

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    Nigerians across the world have condemned the chain of bomb attacks which were carried out by Islamic sects in three different locations in Abuja, Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory and Kaduna, on Thursday killing at least seven people.

    The explosions roared through the northern part of Nigeria, carried out by the Islamic terrorists.

    Officials put the total casualties at five with almost 30

    A later explosion in Kaduna is the third in a series of bomb blasts that has rocked the nation.

    It happened in Ungwan Muazu, near the location where a suicide bomber died while trying to plant a bomb a few weeks ago.

    In an earlier explosion, at least 10 people were reportedly killed in Kaduna, where a suicide bomber detonated a massive bomb he had dropped off near the office of ThisDay newspaper on Kano road, in the proximity of Ahmadu Bello Way.

    At the ThisDay office in Abuja, a suicide bomber drove a car through the gates of the newspaper’s warehouse. Allegedly, buildings over 1 kilometer away shook from the resulting explosion.

    President Goodluck Jonathan,  who is in Cote D’Ivoire for an Extra-Ordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), condemned the attacks.

    Earlier on  Thursday afternoon, suicide car bombers targeted two offices of the Nigerian newspaper, ThisDay in the capital Abuja and northern city of Kaduna on Thursday, killing at least seven people in apparently coordinated attacks.

    Two massive bombs were detonated in both Abuja and Kaduna offices of the newspaper.

    Though This Day is based in southern Nigeria based and it is an avowed supporter of President Goodluck Jonathan’s government, the influential Newspaper has editorial  and distribution branches offices across the nation .

    A fireman on duty at the Thisday warehouse where one of the attacks took place.

    In the  Abuja attack, a suicide bomber drove a car through the gates of the newspaper’s warehouse tearing through to reach the reception area. The impact of the bomb was felt over 1 kilometre away shaking buildings and sending shock waves across the area.

    President Goodluck Jonathan,  who is in Cote D’Ivoire for an Extra-Ordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), condemned the attacks.

    As at Thursday evening, doctors are battling to save many lives as many who were injured are battling for their life in the hospital

    Eight out of the 13 injured victims are in stable condition and receiving treatments at the National Hospital, Abuja.

    The remaining five victims are getting medical attention at the Wuse General Hospital, also in the Federal Capital Territory.

    At the National Hospital, the Principal Information Officer of the hospital, Hajiya Rabiah Labaran, confirmed that three dead victims of the blasts have been deposited at the hospital’s mortuary.

    One of the victims of the blast, a female fuel attendant at the Conoil petrol station, opposite Thisday, named Blessing said “I was selling fuel, when I heard a loud bang and then some sharp objects hit me on the hand, then I was brought here.

    Insider sources disclosed that three out of the five victims brought in were in very critical condition.

    The Department of State Services (DSS) has identified one of the assailants of the newspaper  in Kaduna  as one Umaru Umaru Mustapha of Maiduguri, Borno State.

    In a press statement, Marilyn Ogar, a Deputy Director of Public Relations in DSS said that Mustapha and another man drove into R9, Kontagora road, Ahmadu Bello Way in a cream-coloured Honda Accord (Academy), registration number AL 306 MKA, at about 11a.m.  That address belongs to SOJ Global Communications and Investment Limited Plaza, and houses correspondents of The Sun, Thisday and Moments Newspapers.

    She said Mustapha alighted “with a container of Improvised Explosive Device (IED).”

    “He was immediately challenged by two gallant Nigerians following which he threw the bomb at them and it denoted killing them instantly,” the statement said.  “Subsequently, Mustapha pulled out a pistol and fired several shots in the air in an attempt to escape.

    He was however caught and subdued by brave members of the public who refused to be intimidated and handed him over to security forces. Nine persons were injured and are receiving treatment.”

    At about the same time, at the premises of Thisday Newspaper in Abuja, another car, a dark green Isuzu Jeep outfitted with bombs, forced its way in, detonated and killed the suicide bomber.

    DSS said two other persons were confirmed killed, while five persons were injured.

    Extending its sympathies to the families of victims and the deceased, DSS applauded the gallantry and patriotism exhibited by well-meaning members of the public who risked their lives to save others.   It hoped that the “new affront” on the media would not deter patriotic reportage of issues that affect the collective interest of Nigerians.

    Mr. Jonathan received the sad news in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire, where he is attending an Extra-Ordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on the situation in Mali and Guinea-Bissau.  According to Mr. Reuben Abati, his spokesman, the Nigeria ruler described the attack as “ignoble, misguided, horrendous and wicked.”

    “President Jonathan reaffirmed the commitment of the Federal Government (FG) to continue to uphold the constitutional right to freedom of expression in general and of press freedom in particular, pledging that criminal elements bent on instilling fear in the minds of Nigerians and foreigners will not succeed,” he said.

    He also urged media practitioners not to be dissuaded from carrying out their fearless campaign for peace, justice and equity as democracy cannot flourish without press freedom.

    Thisday Newspaper

    Ima Niboro, President Jonathan’s former media aide who lives less than a kilometer from the scene of the Abuja attack, similarly condemned the violence.  “This is no doubt another affront to our collective freedom and way of life,” he said.  “It stands against all that we believe in and hold dear as a people, disparate and different though we are.”

    Mr. Niboro called on all well-meaning Nigerians to rise against this threat to Nigeria. “We must speak in one voice to condemn these acts of terror. We must unite against those that seek to rein in our freedoms; our destined greatness as a nation.”

    Mr. Jonathan has previously promised to defeat Boko Haram within the next few months.

    Eight out of the 13 victims of Thursday’s bomb blasts at Thisday newspapers are in stable condition and receiving treatments at the National Hospital, Abuja.

    The remaining five victims are getting medical attention at the Wuse General Hospital, also in the Federal Capital Territory.

    At the National Hospital, the Principal Information Officer of the hospital, Hajiya Rabiah Labaran, confirmed that three dead victims of the blasts have been deposited at the hospital’s mortuary.

    She said: “Eight victims were brought to the Accident and Emergency unit of the hospital at about 11.30 and 11.40am and at about 12 pm when we went to the mortuary, we found three dead bodies.’’

    While six of them are still receiving treatment and are in stable condition, she said that two of the victims who sustained mild injuries have been treated and discharged.

    The eight victims comprising two females and six males are – Chimeze Grace, Ekom Ngozi, Danladi Timothy, Abubakar Zaki Danlabo, Danda Nuhu, Sunday Adefoye, Akpi Boy Okogie and Blessing Elom.

    The Deputy Director Search and Rescue, National Emergency Management Agency, Martins Usuwa, confirmed that five persons were taken to Wuse General Hospital for treatment.

    One of the victims of the blast, a female fuel attendant at the Conoil petrol station, opposite Thisday, named Blessing said “I was selling fuel, when I heard a loud bang and then some sharp objects hit me on the hand, then I was brought here.”