The Nigerian military has announced the arrest of one suspect in connection with the May 20 bombing in Jos Central Market that killed over 200 people.
The Director of Defence Information, Chris Olukolade, announced the arrest in Abuja Wednesday, the News Agency of Nigeria reports.
“In respect of this incident, the police has reported that a suspect has been taken into custody while all leads are being pursued to resolve and apprehend the culprits,” Mr. Olukolade said.
Details of the identity of the suspected bomber was however not provided.
Two explosions had gone off around the ever-busy Jos Main Market, between Railway Terminus and the temporary site of the Jos University Teaching Hospital, killing hundreds and injuring several others.
The Plateau state Governor, Jonah Jang, later visited the blast scene during he blamed traders, the opposition and critics of the government for the explosion.
The governor said the state government had asked traders to vacate the market; and that if they had obeyed, the explosion would not have occurred or the casualty would not have been that high.
“This place is not a market in the first place,” he said. “They were trading here illegally; we had made several attempts to relocate them to a better place, but they resisted.”
He vowed that his administration would demolish the market and chase the traders from the place.
“This time, we are going to clear this place, I will hold a security meeting and ensure that nobody comes back here to trade again. This decision is in the interest of safeguarding lives and property,” he said.
Mr. Jang also blamed the traders at the market for their inability to detect that bomb-laden vehicles were parked within their midst for hours.
“How come a car will be parked in a place for hours, and almost on the road; yet nobody raised alarm,” he said. “We must learn to be security conscious.”
The governor did not stop at blaming the traders for the blast, he also blamed opposition leaders and critics of the government for the worsening Boko Haram insurgency in Northern Nigeria.
Mr. Jang said some critics, some of whom had held leadership positions in Nigeria in the past, had threatened to make the country ungovernable for President Goodluck Jonathan and were sponsoring the insurgents.
He asked the president to go tough on such people.
“There is nobody that is above the law of his country,” he said. “Let Nigerians challenge those making inflammatory comments over insecurity.”
“Mubarak (ex-Egyptian leader) has just been jailed, former Prime Minister of Israel was also jailed recently. Therefore, whichever leadership position anyone has held in Nigeria does not make such a person untouchable.
“I am calling Mr. President to take decisive actions against all those making such comments,” he added.
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