There is tension in some parts of Sokoto State as some youths protesting the arrest of two persons suspected to be involved in the killing of a female student, Deborah Samuel, for alleged blasphemy attacked some churches along with Ahmadu Bello way in the state capital.
The protesters had earlier in their numbers stormed the Sultan of Sokoto’s palace, setting up a bonfire near the building and demanding the release of the two suspects.
Shouting “Allahu Akbar, God is great” while carrying different placards. The protesters carried placards with inscriptions “Release(nd) our brothers,” and “Muslims is not a terrorist,” in the presence of security officers.
The protest was organised by Isiyaku Malami, a Muslim devout who believes the murder suspects were protecting the integrity of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW).
“Peace be upon you, we are calling on all Muslims in Sokoto State, for a protest because of our brothers that have been arrested in defending our religion -Islam.
Those who are uplifting the honour of our prophet SAW,” reads the protest message shared by Mr Malami to Muslims in the state. But armed policemen fired teargas canisters to disperse the angry crowd, during which two persons were reportedly injured.
Not satisfied, sources said the protesters invaded some churches along with Ahmadu Bello way in the state capital, destroying their properties.
The building of Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) in the area was also reportedly set on fire by the irate youths.
“The Catholic church was attacked and scattered while the First ECWA church beside it has been burnt. Some Christians were injured. These youths also attacked some Igbo traders and destroyed their cars.
“Heard they are burning shops and stealing goods currently in city centres as well. Sadly, no intervention from the armed forces,” a Sokoto resident said.
The victim, Deborah, a 200 level female student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, was mobbed and killed before his corpse was set ablaze within the school premises on Thursday.
She was accused of blasphemy in a voice note she dropped on her class’ WhatsApp platform, in which she was alleged to have blasphemed Prophet Muhammad (SAW).
Meanwhile, Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal, has imposed a curfew in the Sokoto metropolis over to curb further spread of violence amid a mob rampage for the release of Deborah Samuel’s murder suspects. The governor said the directive was issued “in pursuance of peace and order in Sokoto metropolis and the entire state.”