Following the bomb explosions that happened in Jos, Plateau State recently, operators of viewing centres in the state have adopted some security measures to enable them show the upcoming footbal world cup without hitches.
The 2014 FIFA World Cup would commence in Brazil, on June 12 and many Nigerian football fans are expected to watch the matches live at viewing centers.
With the centres becoming targets of attack by insurgents, most of the operators in Jos, have adopted security measures to enable fans enjoy the games without fear.
Mr Nandom Musa, owner of a centre near Shepherd House Jos, said that he had engaged some individuals who would help keep watch over his centre.“Before the matches, the boys and I will go round the centre to ensure that nothing suspicious is kept close to the hall.
“I have acquired hand metal detectors to thoroughly screen the viewers and ensure that nobody enters the hall with a dangerous weapon.
“We would have some people permanently stationed outside to keep guard and make sure that no car comes close to the centre,” he said.
* Nigerians watching football match in a viewing centre.
Musa informed that they have lost a lot of customers since bomb blasts occurred in Jos last month in spite of the steps taken to ensure their safety.
“Since viewing centres have become targets of attack, many people have stopped coming to watch matches.
“I have contacts of some of them and I have been sending text messages to them to inform them of the efforts we have put in place, to allay their fears,” he said.
Another operator in Dadin Kowa, Mohammed Sadiq, said they have advised their customers not to come to the viewing centres with their cars.
Sadiq added that he has personally arranged with some security outfits to keep watch over his centre during world cup matches.
“They will complement the efforts of the boys I have hired and if possible, they will have arms and that may help to assuage the fears,” he said.
Meanwhile, some football fanatics told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, that they would prefer to either watch the matches at home or not watch at all.
Mr Abubakar Bitako said that he would do everything possible to get a satellite decoder during the period, to enable him watch matches at home.
Bitako advised people who could afford the satellite, to do the same, while those who could not, to watch the matches on local television stations.
Another fan, Agabus Pwanagba, said that viewing football matches at the centres was exciting, because it enabled one to meet people from different shades of life.
He noted that watching football alone was always boring, adding that the centres afforded him the opportunity to analyse matches with fellow viewers.
Pwanagba lauded viewing centre operators for the security measures taken, and advised those who were yet to do so, to do the same.
No fewer than three people were reported killed in a bomb blast that happened near a viewing centre in Jos last month.
The Boko Haram insurgents were believed to have carried out the terror attack on innocent football fans.