The Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) has declared secessionist agitation groups like the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) as a threat to the nation’s security.
Other groups declared as enemies of the state are Boko Haram terrorists, Niger Delta militants, Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN or the Shiite group), Muslim Brotherhood, ISIS recruitment cells, armed herdsmen, cattle rustling and gun running syndicates.
In a report sent to President Muhammadu Buhari titled: ‘2016 Annual Threat Assessment’, showed that a multi-agency and multidisciplinary organization called the Intelligence Fusion Centre (IFC) has been created to analyze information from different sources and agencies with respect to the threat to the country.
IFC will then integrate all information gathered by different security agencies into a single intelligence product.
The IFC, intelligence sources said, would make it easier for security agencies to share information.
In determining which organization constitutes a threat to the country, the IFC considers both intent and capability.
“For it is the combination of these two factors that most sharply characterises the significance of these threats to the security of Nigeria,” the 2016 Annual Threat Assessment stated.
“The above classification, perhaps explains the decision to clamp down on both the IMN and IPOB.”
International human rights organizations such as the Amnesty International reported that excessive forces were used by Nigerian security agencies in dealing with both IMN and IPOB.
Until last week, the leaders of both groups were kept in jail. However, IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu, was granted bail under stringent conditions which those in authorities believed he would not be able to meet.
Kanu, however, pulled a surprise and fulfilled all the bail conditions. He was consequently released.
But leader of IMN, Sheikh Ibrahim el-Zakzaky, was not as lucky. He had been in jail for almost a year and a half.
An order of a Federal High Court directing the government to free him and his wife was not complied with. The decision to disobey the court order might have been informed by intelligence classifying the group he leads as a threat to the nation.
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