The governor of Plateau State, Simon Lalong, has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to restore military checkpoints in the state to check the movement of suspected terrorists.
The governor made the call on Monday following multiple bomb blasts in Jos on Sunday night in which 44 people died and 67 got injured according to figures by the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA.
Shortly after he visited the scenes of the blasts and the injured victims at Plateau Specialist Hospital, Mr. Lalong said, “today I made an appeal to Mr. President to please allow us to have checkpoints”.
“This is because without the security checkpoints, people can flow from all angles and attack innocent people,’’ he said.
President Buhari had directed the removal of all military checkpoints nationwide, saying internal security should be handled by the police.
The government later relaxed the order, to allow checkpoints in high risk areas like the northeast, which is currently facing a brutal insurgency by the Boko Haram sect.
The governor warned residents to desist forthwith from riding their motorcycles or face the full weight of the law, saying that commercial motorcycle operations remained banned.
He said a taskforce had been constituted to ensure that cyclists strictly adhere to the ban which was initiated by his predecessor and passed into law by the 7th Plateau Assembly.
“We have a taskforce in place to keep motorcyclists off the streets and as a government we are going to push that to any level.
“Any motorcyclist who refuses to respect the law will see what will happen to him in the next few days.
“This is because it is part of lawlessness we are experiencing today,’’ he said.
The governor commended security agencies and the various aid groups for their quick intervention in saving the lives of the injured victims.
He also commended the Nigeria Medical Association for suspending its strike to save lives and pointed out that the deaths would have been more without them.
Mr. Lalong said the state government had already released money to assist in the treatment of the injured and prayed for the repose of the souls of the death.
He urged Plateau citizens to remain calm and assured them that his administration, in conjunction with security agencies, would do all within its powers to avoid a repeat of the dastardly act.