Mr Rilwan Bala Musa, Comptroller General of Immigration
Written by Olawale Rasheed
Sunday, 05 May 2013
THERE are strong indications that
veterans of Mali Islamist war are already finding their way into Nigeria’s northern borders, just as reports indicated that the Al-Qaeda in the Maghreb (AQIM) has activated its sleeping cells across Northern Nigeria.
Security agencies are also said to be in
dilemma over the best approach to the
counter-terrorism efforts, especially as
the jihadists are not just Boko Haram
fighters, but Islamists from AQIM and
other sects alleged to be involved in attacks on security agencies.
These indications emerged at a meeting
of the Maghreb Union held in Rabat,
Morroco, last week where Maghreb
countries assessed the fallout of the
French intervention which led to the exit
of Islamist fighters from Northern Mali. Though Nigeria was not part of the
meeting, reports indicated that the
ministers and counter-terrorism officials
at the meeting reviewed the war efforts
and concluded that Islamist fighters had
retreated to parts of Algeria, Libya with substantial numbers heading back to
border regions of Northern Nigeria via
Niger and Chad republics.
The meeting, which agreed on a number
of security measures to contain the
fallout, was also said to have hinted that
AQIM had refocused its operations,which involved kidnapping for ransom, among
others, with the retreating fighters said to be attaching themselves to the sleeper cells of the jihadist sect across the identified countries.