The federal government on Thursday said it is leaving no stone unturned to recapture all the fleeing inmates after an attack on the medium security custodial facility in Kuje, Abuja, by gunmen late Tuesday.
A statement by Sola Fasure, a media adviser to Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, Minister of Interior, on Thursday, said all checkpoints have been put on alert in an effort to track the fleeing inmates.
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The attackers, who used explosive devices and came through the main entrance and the fence of the facility respectively, also left three personnel of the Service seriously injured.
A total of 879 inmates escaped from the facility during the attack with about 70 of them suspected members of the Boko Haram terrorist group.
But the minister said: “We are working with the Ministry of Defence and the Office of the National Security Adviser as well as other intelligence and security agencies to ensure that the attackers and the escaped inmates are captured and returned to custody.
“As we speak, security personnel are combing the whole area, up to a distance of 100 kilometres radius, looking for them.
“All checkpoints nationwide have been put on alert. More than 400 of them have been brought in and more are still coming.”
Aregbesola appealed to all residents to be calm but vigilant, urging them to report all suspicious individuals and activities to the nearest security agency around them.
“We appeal also to doctors and medical workers to treat and then immediately report anyone with gunshot wounds to the law enforcement agency,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Minister has directed that a full investigation into the incident be carried out, adding that anyone found complicit would be dealt with.
The statement also said the Minister had directed that all custodial facilities in the country be fortified; that all personnel be vigilant and alert, to avoid recurrence.