The recently proscribed Islamic Movement in Nigeria claimed that no fewer than 12 of its member Shiite Muslims were killed by overzealous policemen during the peaceful procession by its members to observe the religious ritual of Ashura, in itself a mourning procession.
There were no incidents in Abuja, Jos, Kebbi, Minna, Lafia, Yola, Gusau, Zaria, Kano, Jalingo, Damaturu, Hadejia and Potiskum”, spokesman Ibrahim Musa said.
Musa said at least three persons were confirmed killed by the police in Kaduna and 10 others injured during the procession.
In Bauchi, six persons, three each in Bauchi and Azare were killed when the police attacked the mourners.
Another 3 persons, he said were killed by the police in Gombe, Gombe state.
“One person was reportedly killed by the police in Illela, during the Ashura procession there, and another person was killed in Goronyo all in Sokoto state.
“In Malumfashi, Katsina state also another person was killed.
“In Katsina town however, several people sustained bullet wounds when the police opened fire on the mourners, not only during the mourning procession, but afterwards as the well armed policemen attempted to forcibly make their way into the Islamic centre of the Movement.
Musa said the casualty figures may rise as members who sustained serious gunshot wounds may not survive.
The police have not responded to the shooting in Bauchi, Kaduna, Gombe and Sokoto.
The Inspector-general of police, Mohammed Adamu on Monday had banned the procession as ‘terrorism’ and instructed police commissioners and AIGs to stop it, everywhere.
But in a clarification today, the IGP said only the IMN members are banned, not muslims who want to perform their religious duties.
According to Musa, this year’s Ashura procession was held in all the state capitals of the North and Abuja.