Radical Islamic sect, the Jama’atu Ali Sunna Lidda’awati Wal Jihad, popularly known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for the coordinated bomb attacks on top Nigerian newspaper house, This Day, saying the group will no longer overlook false reports in media about its activities.
In an exclusive interview with Premium Times online publication, the purported spokesman of the sect, operating under the name Abu Qaqa, said the radical organization was sick of the false information being published 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,” Mr. Qaqa said.
He listed three falsities:
First, Qaqa refuted reports published in the media earlier this year that the State Security Service had the spokesman in custody. He claimed he is the one and only spokesman for the sect and not the man in custody, whom the sect identified as an Abu Darda.
As to the second false reporting, Qaqa said: “Another issue was the recent kidnappings in the north; we were clear with our position as a group during a teleconference with reporters but we were shocked the next day when newspaper headlines added a lot of things which I never said during that interview.”
The third example, Mr. Abul Qaqa said, is the false intepretation of the sect’s recent video message posted on YouTube last week.
“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.”
When asked why the group targeted This Day Newspaper offices in Abuja and Kaduna, the spokesman accused the paper of spreading and promoting false stories.
He said “the sins of THISDAY are more,” recalling that the paper had once published an opinion piece insulting Prophet Mohammed.
He warned more attacks targeting the media, saying “we will hit the media hard since they have refused to listen to our plea for them to be fair in their reportage”.
He warned that the media remain neutral in their reporting.
“The media in Nigeria are not a problem to us if they will do their job professionally without taking sides,” Mr. Abul Qaqa said.
The State Security Service claim five people, including the suicide bomber who attacked the Abuja office of the