By Ezinwanne Onwuka
● One killed as police and Shiites clash at pro-Palestine protest
A violent clash between police and a Shiite group protesting Israel’s brutal assault on Gaza left one person dead and several injured in Kaduna, Northwest Nigeria on Thursday.
The protesters, members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria [IMN], marched across the streets of Kaduna carrying Palestinian flags and dummies of dead children in a show of solidarity with Palestinians and condemnation of Israel. The crowd chanted “death to Israel” and “we support Palestine.”
According to local media, there was a face-off between the police and the arms-wielding protesters when the officers arrived to disperse the crowd with teargas. The police said the Shiite Muslims fired at them. “They fired catapults with pellets at our men. In the process they (Shi’ites) killed one civilian identified as Aliyu,” police spokesperson Mansur Hassan said.
Hassan also condemned the protest. “They were protesting against the Israel–Palestine war, but this is not Israel, this is Kaduna,” he said. The IMN has been a vocal supporter of Palestine since the Israel–Hamas war began.
● Trial of terrorists begins in 2 weeks: Abuja’s Minister of Justice
The Nigerian government will, in two weeks, start the trial of suspected terrorists who have been indicted for various crimes. Nigeria’s Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi assured the government is committed to ensuring a smooth trial with the option of virtual trials.
“Facilities are being put in place. Apart from the regular physical mode of trial, we are working on ways to ensure that virtual trials can also be conducted,” Fagbemi said. The virtual sessions, he said, are to fast-track the trials.
Authorities have secured about 500 convictions and the forfeiture of crime proceeds amounting to over N45 billion [$54,378,540] to the Nigerian government since 2021, Fagbemi said.
● Bandits kidnap Kaduna district head, two others
Gunmen have abducted the district head of Kujama village in Chikun County of Kaduna State, Steven Ibrahim.
The traditional ruler, along with his two aides, was reportedly accosted on a highway by the gunmen on motorcycles. The gunmen disappeared with their latest hostages to a nearby forest refuge.
Although the abduction took place on Sunday evening [Nov. 12], authorities confirmed it only Thursday.
● Security chief Ribadu rates Tinubu’s government high on security
National Security Adviser [NSA], Nuhu Ribadu has said terrorism and banditry have reduced since President Bola Tinubu assumed office in May. Insecurity, which has spread across Nigeria, is a major challenge for Tinubu. He rode to power after promising to solve the country’s security crisis.
As the Tinubu Administration completes five months of rule, many Nigerians still worry that Tinubu is not doing enough to beef up security. Nigeria was recently ranked sixth globally for organized crime as reported by TruthNigeria. Yet, Ribadu says the direction Nigeria is going in terms of security is “okay.”
The Security Chief, speaking at an event in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State on Thursday, appealed to Nigerians to have faith in Tinubu as he works to totally eliminate insecurity in the country. “It is not going to be for too long. It’s a matter of time. It will be better,” Ribadu assured.
● Court voids governorship election in Zamfara
The Court of Appeal in Abuja has sacked Governor Dauda Lawal of Zamfara State and nullified the March 18 governorship election that brought Lawal to power.
The governorship election was a hard-fought contest between Lawal of the Peoples Democratic Party [PDP] and Bello Mattawale of the ruling All Progressives Congress [APC]. Lawal won the election with a total of 377,726 votes while the APC candidate carried 311,976 votes, according to official results.
Matawalle challenged the results at the election tribunal in Zamfara, but the tribunal, on September 16, ruled in favor of Lawal. The Court of Appeal has now overturned the earlier election result. The court also ordered a rerun of the governorship election in three counties: Maradun, Birnin-magaji and Bukyun.
Ezinwanne Onwuka reports for TruthNigeria from Abuja.