Members of Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) faction of Shi’ite were on Friday dispersed by policemen in Kaduna, as they protested the continued incarceration of their leader, Sheikh Ibrahim el-Zakzaky.
El-Zakzaky and his wife Hajiya Zeenat Ibrahim among some other members of the group are facing charges in Kaduna State High Court and Magistrate Court respectively, after being arrested in December 2015 following clash with the military in Zaria.
The Shi’ite members in their thousands, composed mainly of young men and women, commenced the protest immediately after the Friday Jumaat prayer along Kano road by shouting “Allahu Akbar (Allah is greatest), free our leader.”
As they stormed Ahmadu Bello Way, Kaduna city’s major thoroughfare, they were immediately accosted by security agencies who shot several canisters of teargas into the sky, forcing the protesters to scatter in different directions.
The protesters had caused immediate anxiety among residents and those who held their Friday Jumaat prayer in the area forcing everyone to scamper to safety for fear of being a victim of another crisis.
The police gunshots further created fear in the vicinity with everyone in the earshot of the gunshot sounds running for cover.
The police then cleared the roads, Ahmadu Bello Way, Kano Road, Ibadan Street and Abeokuta Street among others, while directing traffic to enable people move freely as traffic threatens to build up.
It was not immediately ascertained if any of the protesters was arrested by the police.