Death Toll Increases As Violence Spreads in Northern Nigeria 

By Ikenga Chronicles October 13, 2016

Death Toll Increases As Violence Spreads in Northern Nigeria 

More killings have reportedly occurred in Northern Nigeria following the brutal killings of no fewer than eight members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, IMN, who were murdered in cold blood in Kaduna.

The violence which erupted in Kaduna on Wednesday afternoon spread to Sokoto, Kastina and Kano. There were unconfirmed reports that nine Shiites were killed in Katsina during the Ashura procession. The group said in a statement late Wednesday that at least 13 of its members were killed in multiple clashes with the police and some hoodlums in Funtua, Sokoto and Kaduna.

Four members of the Shi’a sect were earlier in the morning killed in the Tudun Wada area of the Kaduna South Local Government Area when some irate youth attacked the sect, and torched the residence of its leader.

The Deputy Commissioner of Police in the state, Alkasim Sunusi, said at a news conference in Sokoto that the deceased was attacked on his way to a procession organised by the sect.

In Katsina State, the police said at least three persons died during a clash between its men and members of the IMN in Funtua, Funtua Local Government Area of the state.

The Commissioner of Police in the state, Usman Abdullahi, said two policemen were injured during the clash.

In Kano, hundreds of IMN members were chased away by some angry youth who disrupted the group’s procession in the Abbatoir area of Kofar Marzugal, wounding many of them. The Shi’ites had planned to converge on Abdullahi Bayero Mosque, Fagge from where they would march to other parts of the state but were prevented by the youth.

The police spokesperson, Magaji Majia, a deputy superintendent of police, who confirmed the incident, said the sect blocked some schools and markets in the area. He said, “Some members of the public stoned and attacked them but we had to rescue some of their women, children and the aged.  We rescued between 40 and 50 persons to a safe custody”.

Media officer of the Joint Task Force, Ikedichi Iweha, told journalists that the situation was quickly brought under control and that no life was lost.

“Security agents have moved into communities in Anguwan rogo, Gangare, Katako and Anguwan Rimi to prevent a situation where anybody will be molested,” Mr. Iweha, an army captain, said.

“However, the place is calm now, we will intensify patrols in that general area and appeal to people to go about their normal businesses.”

Meanwhile, a statement by the IMN on Wednesday said at least 13 of its members were killed in Funtua, Sokoto and Kaduna during the commemoration of Ashura in some major cities across Nigeria.

The statement by the president of the media forum of IMN, Ibrahim Musa, said its members were attacked by a combined force of security agents and some others dressed as hoodlums as well as paid thugs escorting them.

“The procession of the martyrdom of Imam Husain started in Funtua, Katsina state peacefully, but was later stopped by a team of policemen who were drafted to the scene to forcibly stop the march,” the statement said.

“After firing teargas canisters on the procession, the police opened fire with live bullets killing nine instantly and injuring about 20 others. There are reports that they went with some victims.”

The group said in Kaduna, the peaceful Ashura procession was concluded without any incident but that armed paid thugs attacked some members of IMN on their way to their various homes injuring them.

It said this was followed by torching of Islamic Centre of IMN at Tudun Wada, Kaduna and subsequent demolition by a combined team of policemen and the army while three members of the movement were killed there.

It stated further, “The story was similar in Jos, Plateau state, where armed soldiers brutally attacked the Ashura procession, then proceeded to invade the Islamic Centre belonging to IMN, making some arrests while threatening to demolish the worship complex.

“Nevertheless, peaceful Ashura processions were conducted in Katsina, Yola, Potiskum, Suleja, Bauchi, Gombe, Lafia and Kano among many towns. In Kano though, the police arrested some Muslim sisters of IMN on their way to their various homes. These have been taken to Bompai police headquarters. A number of arrests were also made in Kaduna and were arraigned before the Shariah Court Daura road. These were sent to prison.”

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