Police Attack Peaceful Protests In Kaduna, Use Live Bullets, Arrest Journalists

By Abdulmumin Giwa

Following a peaceful protest by members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria in Kaduna condemning the the concocted charges of homicide against Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky, the police launched a deadly attack on the protesters shooting them with live rounds.

Several members of the Movement have been injured including women and children.

Not less than ten members of the Movement might have been arrested by the police during the protest including journalists who witnessed the clampdown.

Members of the movement are protesting the concocted charges of homicide against their leader by the Kaduna state government for which the case is coming up on Thursday 21st June 2018 at the state High Court.

Hundreds of the members of the Movement were killed in December 2015 during a clampdown by the Nigerian Army.

The leader Sheikh Zakzaky was put in detention along with his wife in a DSS facility in Abuja. A court of competent jurisdiction, the Federal High Court ordered for his unconditional release and compensation for which the government acted in contempt of court.

He was later moved to Kaduna to face new charges which were raised after government had disobeyed the court ruling.

In a recent statement by the movement condemning attempt by government to try the Sheikh in secrecy, the President of the Media Forum of the Movement, Ibrahim Musa said the Nigerian Army in December 2015 attacked the Sheikh’s residence, killed over one thousand of his followers including three out of the four remaining sons, burned his nephew and elder sister alive, shot him and his wife and dragged their bodies over the dead bodies of their children and took them to a detention facility in Abuja. The court ordered for his unconditional release and compensation which the government disobeyed. He is now being charged to Court on concocted charges.

The statement further condemned the attempt for trial in secrecy, and called for journalists, rights groups and members of the public to be allowed to witness the processes as justice must not just be done but must be seen to have been done, it stated.

In a swift reaction to the shootings, the Kaduna police command in a statement signed by the Police PRO, ASP Mukhtar H. Aliyu claimed that members of the movement were armed with guns, knives, IEDs etc attacking police officers and disturbing the public peace.

The police also claimed that the members of the movement are criminals and that they will treat them as such.

Members of the public affected by the police brutality have since condemned the police for using undue force on peaceful protesters and cause tension in the public.

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