‘ISIS Fighters May Be Among Libya Returnees’

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A security expert, Dr Ona Ekhomu, has advised the Federal Government to conduct checks on Nigerians returning from Libya, saying ISIS fighters may use the avenue to enter the country.

Ekhomu, who is the President of the Association of Industrial Security and Safety Operators of Nigeria, in a statement on Monday, said proper documentation and vetting of the returnees could help forestall a disaster in the future.

He said, “Given the threat of infiltration into Nigeria of ISIS fighters, it is prudent to carefully prove the identity of each of the returnees before releasing them.

“Some of these people may have pledged loyalty to ISIS. They should be separated from those who migrated for economic reasons. There is no way of knowing a Nigerian by face. It is presumed that most of the returnees do not have travel documents. So, it is merely assumed that they are Nigerians.

“A questionnaire must be quickly drawn up to enable the returnees to prove their national identities. These should include questions about their dates of birth, places of birth, LGAs, names of traditional rulers, primary and secondary schools, ethnicity and native languages. To discern their purpose for migration, they should be questioned about the source of funds for their trip to Libya. All information provided must be quickly investigated (verified) and each individual cleared to enter society. Nigeria has too many active killing fields right now and does not need the threat of ISIS infiltration.”

Ekhomu lauded President Muhammadu Buhari for ordering the repatriation of the Nigerians, saying the government must also do the “responsible thing” of ascertaining their true identities “as there is a high probability that a few of them may be ISIS fighters escaping from Libya, or coming to Nigeria to execute a possible terrorist plot.”