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IMN members hold processions despite police warning, claim five killed

Despite warning by the police against holding procession, members of the proscribed Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) on Tuesday held procession across some Northern states.

The police had warned on Monday that all procession and gathering by members of the detained Ibrahim El-Zakzaky Movement remain illegal noting that such gathering or procession would be viewed as “an act of advancement of terrorism”.

However, the procession held majorly in the northern part of Nigeria in cities such as Abuja, Kaduna, Gombe and Bauchi.

In Kaduna on Tuesday, the IMN members said that the police disrupted their procession as it was reported that police attacked them along the Western Bypass on the outskirt of Kaduna metropolis.

The President Media Forum of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Ibrahim Musa, claimed that three of their members were killed in Kaduna. He did not give details of how the three IMN members died during the procession.

In Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, IMN members comprising men, women, and children did the weeping procession but for a short period. They had the event between Berger roundabout and Wuse, commercial areas in Abuja.

There was no report of any incident.

“In Abuja it (the procession) was peaceful because the police could not stop us,”said Yahaya Muhammed, media coordinator of the IMN.

The religious ritual in Bauchi and Gombe ended tragically as Mohammed said one person in each of the state was confirmed dead.

“In Gombe, there was shooting and one person was confirmed dead. In Azare local government (area) in Bauchi, one person was confirmed dead,” he said.

The police had denied all the claims.

Yakubu Sabo, Spokesman of Kaduna Police Command said the claim was “a blatant lie”.

“Its a blatant lie. The police didn’t kill anybody. Police only dispersed some hoodlums that were sighted along Bakin Ruwa staging a protest,” Sabo said.

“Based on the report we have, there was no casualty. We received a report that they were sighted around Biakin Ruwa bypass, and our men went there and dispersed them professionally.

”That has been their (IMN) approach to make frivolous claims. This is a group that has been proscribed by the state and federal government. The police will not fold its arms; we dispersed them professionally. There was no report of casualty. They are just making this claim to seek public sympathy,” he said.

The Shia group led by Ibraheem El-Zakzaky was proscribed and described as aterrorism group following several protests to demand the release of its leader. Many of the protests had resulted in loss of lives and properties in the country.

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