How Safe is Nigeria’s Capitol Building?

The world witnessed a shameful and dangerous riot on the capitol grounds of Washington D.C. USA, yesterday. Mobs of Donald Trump supporters donned MAGA (Make America Great Again) hats, waving flags, sticks, poles and other paraphernalia, as they stormed the Capitol building while the U.S. Congress was in session to count and affirm the presidential election that occurred in November of last year.

Photo by Aubrey Hicks on Unsplash

They disrupted the typically solemn and ceremonious event that has occurred for the last 200 plus years in America and set the nation into a state of panic, hysteria, and turmoil. People are wondering what else could happen, and how much farther can these thugs, and insurrections go.

Some officials are thinking of forcing the President to resign or to invoke the never used 25th amendment – which would in effect remove him from office, even though Trump has less than two weeks left in is term as president.

Riots at America’s Capitol

Watching these sad events unfold, made me think. How safe is Nigeria’s National Assembly Complex? Is it protected? Would Nigerians even think about storming this beautiful edifice? Do most people even know where it is located?

National Assembly Complex

Nigeria’s National Assembly Complex is a magnificent dome shaped structure that covers 40,000 square meters of floor area and houses both the legislative and senatorial chambers of government. This is where laws are drafted, debated and enacted.

This is the seat of our Federal Republic. This complex is located in the Three Arms Zones of the FCT (Federal Capital Territory). Constructed in 1999 at an estimated cost of 35 million dollars, it was built by ITB ltd of Nigeria.

The complex features a stunning green domed structure and two wings that are united by a rising atrium. The grounds are laced with green lawns and swaying palm trees. From a distance the complex is a sight to hold and impressive indeed.

Large stairs rise to a wide landing where legislators and senators file into the building to do their work. There are tall and vast windows that run the distance of the center of the building and there are covered walkways that span the grounds and create a picturesque site.

Is The Site Secure?

There is definitely a military presence on the grounds, but how secure is it really? Maybe a better a question is – who would even want to storm this complex? Nigerians are fond of protests, and in fact we can be called professional protestors. With the recent END SARS demonstrations last year, it is easy to see how things can escalate quickly and what the ending result could look like.

Nigeria’s government has a lot of issues, and there are a staggering amount of grievances from the citizens directed to the rulers, as well as religious, tribal and regional conflicts and not to mention the Boko Haram insurgency.

Are Our Troops Prepared?

Hypothetically, if there happened to be a surge or an attack on the Assembly Complex to make a political statement – would the guards be equipped to handle the event? Not sure anyone has an answer to this question and honestly, we pray that this would never occur.

There is too much conflict and suffering in our country already, no need for any more scenarios. I just couldn’t help but think about this, as I watched the disgraceful events unfold in the U.S.

Rather, lets enjoy the beauty of our National Assembly Complex and hope that the officials that walk its marble floors, will enact better laws and policies that will uplift and help the faithful citizens of our revered country.

Roman Kingsley

Journalist based in the United States and Nigeria, focusing on Real Estate Development and the stories emerging in and around the built environment.

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