Read Statement Issued by the Nigerian Military….
ZARIA INCIDENT: LAW AND ORDER MUST PREVAIL
Yesterday’s incident involving clashes between detachments of the Nigerian Army, accompanying the Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General TY Buratai and followers of Sheikh Ibrahim El Zak-Zaky, suspected to be members of the Shiite Sect in Zaria, leading to loss of lives as a result of the Shiite group members’ blocking roads and not allowing other passers-by to go about their lawful businesses and activities, was most unfortunate.
The Nigerian Constitution guarantees the rights of any group of persons and Sheikh El Zak Zaky’s followers to hold a peaceful march or procession unhindered, but it also guarantees other people’s rights of way on public highways. It is important to note that over the years this group has subjected ordinary citizens using public roads to untold hardship, delays, threats and disruption simply because they insist on using public space irrespective of inconvenience and hardship on other law abiding citizens and motorists. This cannot be tolerated and must stop!
As soon as order is restored to the situation in Zaria city and its environs, the Police will conduct an enquiry and the public will be informed. In the meantime, the public is advised to go about their lawful business and report any suspicious persons or incidents to the police.
Colonel Sani Kukasheka Usman
Acting Director Army Public Relations
Here’s our story of what transpired……
10 supporters of the Shiite sect were said to have been killed yesterday an unknown number killed today as most residents of Zaria, especially those residing in Tudun Wada, Gyellesu, Sabon Gari and Tudun Jukun, could not sleep last night, as heavy sound of gunshots and explosions pervaded the air throughout the night up to this morning.
The development was a spill over from the clash that took place between the Army and Shi’ite over access to the PZ-Samaru Road where many lives were feared lost.
It was also gathered that soldiers advanced into Gyellesu, where Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky’s house is located, yesterday night, perhaps to take control of the area.
Meanwhile, the Islamic movement in Nigeria otherwise known as Shi’ites have alleged that the government is in an all out war with its members following the siege the military laid on the house of its leader, Sheik Ibrahim Zakzaky.
In a statement, signed by Ibrahim Musa, the editor of the movement’s Al Mizan newspaper, the movement accused the government of being “the contractor” of the killings, calling on the international community to intervene and seek redress for the victims.
“Following alleged blockade of the route of the Chief of Army Staff by the members of the Movement, the Nigerian Army brutally descended on armless members of the Movement with heavy military weapons killing indiscriminately,” the movement said.
“In the mean time, leading members of the Islamic Movement and other members as well, have been killed by the soldiers including the leader of the Kano Center, Sheikh Muhammad Turi, Dr. Mustapha Sa’eed, Malam Ibrahim Usman and Sister Jummai Gilima.
“Also killed was Sayyid Aliy, the son of the leader of the Movement, Sayyid Ibraheem Zakzaky (H), the wife of the Sayyid Ibraheem Zakzaky (H), Malama Zeenat Ibraheem and tens of other members as more are being killed as at the time of this release.”
The statement added that the whereabout and condition of Zakzaky is not known.