Police arrest 400 Shi’ite protesters in Abuja

Written by on October 31, 2018

The violent protest by members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (aka Shi’tte) continued yesterday in Abuja. Two policemen and an unspecified number of protesters were injured.

The police arrested 400 protesters and seized 31 petrol bombs, daggers and a flag with an Arabic inscription.

The injured policemen are Mark Ijai and John Isah. A police van was burnt by the protesters.

The burnt vehicle marked RRS 45 is one of those donated by Dangote Foundation. It is registered as NPF3890D.

FCT Commissioner of Police Bala Ciroma said:

“The FCT Police Command has intercepted and arrested some members of the El-Zakyzaky Islamic Movement of Nigeria with 31 bottles of petrol bomb and other dangerous weapons being ferried into FCT by their members to cause mayhem and attack innocent citizens, including law enforcement agents deployed to protect lives and property.

“It is also unfortunate to inform you that members of this group during a violent protest, today, 30th October, 2018 without any provocation, went on the rampage and burnt down a Police Rapid Response Squad (RRS) patrol vehicle deployed at Ademola Adetokunbo Crescent.”

On how they were arrested, Ciroma said: “On 30th October, 2018 at about 1230hrs, police operatives on stop and search duty along Tipper Garage, Katampe intercepted and arrested one Mustapha Abdullahi, ‘m’ 20 years, of Ungwan Gwari, Suleja with 18 bottles of petrol bombs carefully concealed in a travelling bag.

“To smuggle himself and the petrol bombs into the city, he disguised as a passenger and boarded a taxi with other unsuspecting passengers.

“He ran out of luck when the vigilant policemen on duty at the point upon reasonable suspicion intercepted the cab and conducted a search on the only bag in the car, which had in it the improvised bomb. Upon the discovery, the suspect was immediately arrested.

“Similarly, on the same date at about 1130hrs, police operatives on stop and search at Dakwa FCT-Niger Boundary arrested one Abdullahi Umar ‘m’ 22 years of Gadan Karte, Illela LGA of Sokoto State with a bag containing thirteen (13) well packaged bottles of petrol bomb.

“During interrogation, the suspect confessed that he arrived Suleja from Sokoto State on Sunday to join other members of their sect for the protest.”

The CP said the suspect also confessed that he was ferrying the petrol bomb to the FCT to confront law enforcement agents adding that those arrested will be charged to court.

On the number of those arrested, he said: “I want to bring to your knowledge that a total of 400 members of the El-Zakzaky Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) who participated in the violent protest of today are currently being detained for discreet investigation; dangerous weapons were also recovered from them.”

Ciroma said the protesters’ suspected first aider, Salahuddeen Ahmad, ‘M’ 23 years of Illela LGA of Sokoto State was also arrested.

On what he intended to do with the bottle, Umar, who came from Sokoto for the protest, explained that he wanted to use the improvised bombs to defend himself.

He said: “I was not on any special mission. I just wanted to use the petrol bombs to defend myself because on Saturday, soldiers started shooting at us in Zuba without provocation.

“My intention was to place the bottle on the grace once the police starts shooting us and then I will light it. With that, the place will be engulfed and our brothers will get a way to escape.”

Noble 107.1 FM Ibadan

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