One killed, six arrested as police, Shi’ites clash in Abuja


Friday Olokor, Godwin Isenyo

At least, one person was feared dead and many others injured on Tuesday during a clash between the police and members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, popularly known as Shi’ites.

The incident was said to have taken place at the Maitama area of the Federal Capital Territory, close to the Headquarters of the National Human Rights Commission.

This was as the FCT Police Command arrested six Shi’ite members for their alleged involvement in violent protest.

During the protest, the police was said to have fired gunshots and teargas canisters to disperse them and in the process, one of them identified as Yunusa Abdulsalam from Kaduna State was hit by bullet.

The President, Academic Forum of IMN, Abdullahi Mohammad, who provided an insight into the incident, in a statement, said many people were injured during the incident.

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According to him, the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), should be blamed for the incident,

He said, “Buhari is gradually turning this country into a police state as police brutality has grown into day-to-day occurrence, and police want to make it the new normal with outrageously blatant human rights infringement and violation.

“Aggrieved citizens can’t even protest without a glitch from security agents. The citizens are not allowed to demand what has been denied them.

“For instance, on Monday, January 25, 2021, police operatives attacked the daily free-Zakzaky protest; they march through the Federal Secretariat, tear-gassing and shooting live ammunition, two protesters seriously injured at the end.

“Again, on Tuesday, January 26, 2021, police waylaid protesters at the crossroads of Transcorp Hilton. They shot many tear-gas canisters indiscriminately, dousing their victims with the gas, before bullets started flying all around and one protester confirmed death.”

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Police arrest six suspected Shiites

Speaking on the Tuesday’s clash, the FCT command spokesperson, Mariam Yusuf, said six persons were apprehended while the police restored calm in the Central Business District “after professionally dispersing a violent protest by some members of the proscribed Islamic Movement of Nigeria.”

Yusuf said in a statement, “Unfortunately, the members of the disbanded sect went on a rampage, destroying public property and attacking innocent citizens, including police officers with stones and other objects.

“Consequently, six members of the proscribed sect have been arrested and will be arraigned in court upon conclusion of investigation.”

Court adjourns El-Zakzaky, wife trial till March 8

Meanwhile, the trial of the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and wife, Zeenat, at the Kaduna State High Court, was on Tuesday, adjourned till March 8, 2021

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The adjournment followed an application by the defence counsel to allow for preview of a video tendered as evidence by a witness (prosecution) at the resumed sitting of the court on Tuesday.

The presiding judge, Justice Gideon Kurada, then ruled on the application as presented by the defence counsel, Mr. Eddie Inegedu, who represented the leader of the El-Zakaky’s legal team, Chief Femi Falana (SAN).

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