Nigeria`s secret police intercept weapons shipment

Nigeria`s secret police have seized a weapons shipment allegedly containing grenades, explosives and mortars at the Lagos airport.

Last Updated: Oct 27, 2010, 12:41 PM IST

Abuja: Nigeria`s secret police have seized a
weapons shipment allegedly containing grenades, explosives and mortars at the Lagos airport.

The shipment consisting of 13 containers were intercepted
at the Apapa port in the country`s commercial capital of
Lagos, State Security Service (SSS) spokeswoman, Marilyn Ogar
said.

The containers were opened after which it was discovered
that they carried dangerous weapons whereas paperwork
suggested the ships were loaded with building materials, she
said.

The capital, Abuja had witnessed bombings that claimed
14 lives during the oil-rich African country`s 50th
independence anniversary on October 1, which has put security
on high alert.

One of the three bomb blasts witnessed during the
independence anniversary exploded near a place where President
Goodluck Jonathan was inspecting a military parade along with
some Heads of State and government delegations.

An Indian delegation, led by Union Corporate and Minority
Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid was also present at the venue
along with the president.

MEND, a guerrilla group claiming to be fighting for
greater resource control in the oil-rich Niger Delta region
had issued a warning prior to the attack and claimed
responsibility for the attack after.
The group`s first message had warned that there is
"nothing worth celebrating after 50 years" as the people of
the Niger Delta have had their land and resources stolen.

Several arrests have been made since then, including the
former leader of MEND Henry Okah in South Africa and his
younger brother Charles Okah, who lives close to the place
where the SSS claimed they intercepted the explosives.
Nigeria got independence from Britain in 1960 and was
later ruled by the military. The nation returned to
presidential democracy in 1999 and has been striving hard to
become Africa`s largest democracy since then.

PTI