World Bulletin/News Desk
A few hours before the launch of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, Nigeria's northeast Adamawa state banned the operation of all commercial football viewing centers in the state.
"This ban is based on the advice by the Nigerian army and it is part of the security measures government is taking to safeguard lives and properties," Ahmad Sajoh, the spokesman for Governor Murtala Nyako, told reporters on Wednesday.
"The government regrets all inconveniences caused by the action to the teeming football fans and the owners of the viewing centers," he added.
The ban came a few hours before the launch of the 20th World Cup in Brazil.
The one-month-long tournament will feature a total of 64 matches involving 32 teams from five continents.
Nigeria's Super Eagles, Africa's current champion, will take on Argentina, Iran and Bosnia-Herzegovina in Group F.
The African powerhouse is making its fifth appearance at the quadrennial tournament.
Endemic power failures often force Nigerian football fans to resort to watching must-see matches at local viewing centers.
But viewing centers in the restive northeast states of Borno and Adamawa have been increasingly targeted by militants.
At least 14 people were killed when a suicide bomber struck close to a viewing center in Mubi, a town in Adamawa State.
Almost a week earlier a bomb attack close to a viewing center in Jos killed the bomber and two others.
In March, twin car bombings near a viewing center and a local shopping center in Maiduguri the provincial capital of Borno State, killed at least 45 people.
The states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe have been the hardest hit by Nigeria's five-year-old Boko Haram insurgency.Last Mod: 12 Haziran 2014, 10:08