Abuja, Kaduna bomb blasts: Why we struck – Boko Haram

By IndepthAfrica
In Nigeria
Apr 26th, 2012

THE Boko Haram sect on Thursday claimed responsibility for the attacks on ThisDay offices in Abuja and Kaduna.

The sect, while claiming responsibility for Thursday’s attacks, said more bombings were coming the way of the media.

The Jama’atu Ahlis Sunna Lidda’awati Wal-Jihad, popularly known as Boko Haram told an online medium Premium Times that it attacked

ThisDay to send a strong message to the media that it would no longer condone reports misrepresenting it in the press, or blaming it for acts it knew nothing about.

Abul Qaqa, spokesperson for the sect, told Premium Times in an exclusive interview that his organisation was fed up with the deliberate misinformation being peddled about it in the Nigerian and foreign media.

“We have repeatedly cautioned reporters and media houses to be professional and objective in their reports. This is a war between us and the government of Nigeria; unfortunately, the media have not been objective and fair in their report of the ongoing war, they chose to take side,” Qaqa said.

He identified three instances where he claimed his group was deliberately misrepresented by the media. The first, according to him, was the rumour of his capture by the Nigerian intelligence agencies.

“Some reporters are aware that I am Abul Qaqa, they know my voice through our long interactions and they also know the role of Abu Darda who heads the enlightenment committee and sometimes facilitates interviews; yet they (media) go by the unsubstantiated view of government that Abul Qaqa is in custody and I am the new spokesman or number two,” he said.

The second misrepresentation, according to Qaqa, was the reporting on the kidnappings of foreigners in the northern part of Nigeria.

The third example, Qaqa said, was the mis-translation of the video the group posted recently.

“Another example is the recent video posted on YouTube by our Imam. I challenge every Nigerian to watch that video again. There is no place our imam either said he will crush President Jonathan or issued an ultimatum to the government in Nigeria; but nearly all papers carried very wrong and mischievous headlines,” he said.

When asked why THISDAY appeared specifically chosen for the attack, Qaqa said THISDAY’s “sins” were more grievous.

“The sins of THISDAY are more,” he said, adding that “they once insulted Prophet Mohammed in 2001 and we have not forgotten. They recently said our Imam executed me which is false. Here I am speaking to you, I am alive and healthy.”

‘We’ll attack the media again’

The group’s spokesman further warned of more attacks on the media.

“We have just started this new campaign against the media and we will not stop here, we will hit the media hard since they have refused to listen to our plea for them to be fair in their reportage.

“In the coming days we will give details and instances where the media have not been fair to us and why we are going to attack them as well.

“The media in Nigeria are not a problem to us if they will do their job professionally without taking sides,” Qaqa said. Tribune

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