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Mr Mike Omeri, the Coordinator, National Information Centre, said on Wednesday that the 486 people arrested by security operatives on Sunday, in Abia, were travellers.
Omeri disclosed this at a joint news conference organised by the centre in Abuja as reported by the News Agency of Nigeria.
The coordinator said the arrest of the travellers was not targeted at any group of persons or individual, but done in view of the general security situation in the country.
He said when the suspects were interrogated, one of them, who had been on the watch list of the Department of State Security Services (DSS) since 2007, was identified.
Omeri said that the incident further led to the questioning of the suspects, who were travelling in “a convoy of over 30 buses with none of them having up to N1,000.
“Clearly, their mission was suspicious and had to be thoroughly investigated; we, therefore, appeal for the understanding of the public in allowing our security agencies carry out their legitimate duties.’’
On June 21 governorship election in Ekiti, the coordinator said contrary to reports, the DSS did not arrest any person in the state over alleged thumb printing of ballot papers ahead of the poll.
“The service (DSS) has not seen nor apprehend anyone with ballot papers.
“Politicians are hereby cautioned against dishing out false information through the media with a view to overheating the system.’’