The imminent fear of a reprisal over the murder of some members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) has led to the arrest of 400 members of the Islamic movement by the Nigerian Police on Tuesday in Abuja.
The Commissioner of Police in the area, Bala Ciroma, stated this when he presented the suspects to the media at the command’s headquarters in Abuja on Tuesday.
The suspects are being detained in order to aid the police in their investigations while dangerous weapons were found on them.
The suspects were reported to have brought in 31 bottles of petrol bombs among other weapons into the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Ciroma said among the suspects was their “First Aider”, one Salahuddeen Ahmad, male, 23, who hails from Illela Local Government of Sokoto State.
Ciroma stated, “It is for the purpose of causing mayhem and attack on innocent citizens, including law enforcement agents deployed to protect lives and property.’’
Ciroma also explained the Shi’ite protesters went on an unprovoked rampage during the process, burning a police vehicle in the process.
The incident was said to have happened on Tuesday when the protesters set fire upon a vehicle belonging to the Rapid Response Squad (RRS) stationed at Ademola Adetokunbo Crescent.
Ciroma also gave details about how one of the protesters, Mustapha Abdullahi, was detained during a stop-and-search along the Tipper Garage area of the city with 18 bottles of petrol bomb found on him.
“To smuggle himself and the patrol bombs into the city, he disguised as a passenger and boarded a taxi with other unsuspecting passengers,” he said.
He said Abdullahi ran out of luck when vigilant policemen on duty at the point “upon reasonable suspicion’’ intercepted the cab and conducted a search on the only bag in the car and found the improvised bombs.
He said the suspect was immediately arrested, adding that he would be arraigned at the end of the investigation.
Speaking to the media, Abdullahi said the bottles contained petrol.
Abdullahi also admitted that the police recovered 18 bottles of the petrol bombs from him, saying “I am a member of the Shi’ite,” he said.
The commissioner also said the Police will do their utmost to safeguard the city whilst maintaining law and order.