Army-Shi’ite Clash: El-Rufai Bans Procession On Highways And Public Facilities
In an effort to further secure and uphold the rights of every citizen in Kaduna state, the state governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, has banned processions on public highways, and the use of public facilities for any kind of procession within the state.
Governor El-Rufai made this known in a state broadcast to people of the state, Thursday.
He noted that a judicial commission of inquiry will be established to investigate the last Saturday clash between members of the Shi’ite group and the Nigerian Army in Zaria, pointing out that its composition and terms of reference would be announced within two weeks.
He said, “We have witnessed sad events in Zaria. There have been tragic consequences and needless loss of lives, and we extend our condolences to the families that have been affected.
“In this somber moment, the government has directed that steps be taken to address the humanitarian fallouts of the security operations. Everyone has a fundamental right to their faiths and beliefs, but no one has any right to practice their faith in ways that diminish distress or inconvenience others.
“Henceforth, no person or group, under any guise will be allowed to block any road, obstruct public highways, occupy public facilities or inconvenience citizens in Kaduna state.
“Anybody that needs to march may do so, but they cannot take over public facilities or disrupt social services and commercial activities in Kaduna state, and any match or procession can be undertaken only with the prior knowledge of, and protection of, the police to prevent the breakdown of law and order,” he warned.
“The commission of inquiry is to be set up under the tribunals of inquiry Act. It will examine the immediate and remote causes of the Zaria incident, and assemble a factual and authoritative account that the government can study and act upon.”
According to him, the commission of inquiry was set up because the government was persuaded that the interests of accountability and transparency, which are best served by a judicial commission of inquiry that will allow all claims to be tested with judicial rigour; positing that the commission of inquiry would be set up under the tribunals of inquiry Act.
El-Rufai however warned that he will not tolerate any form of lawlessness, having invested on heavy security, which would serve as a basis for a successful execution of developmental projects of the state.
“We all should jointly say no to actions that divide people, reject conduct that ignores or violates the legal and constitutional rights of others and oppose practices that contest the prerogatives of state institutions to safeguard and protect every citizen,” he added.
He urged citizens to be vigilant and report any suspicious act around them, while they go about their normal activities. “Let us all redouble our commitment to sustaining the peace, and to uphold each other in our God-given humanity.”