The Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Adamu has said that only members of the proscribed Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) are banned from procession.
Concise News understands that the IMN had forewarned that journalists, members of the public and security personnel may die during their procession today.
However, the IGP has sent out a strong warning to the IMN, stressing that non-IMN members are not banned from conducting Ashura procession in Abuja and other states.
“The IGP has directed all CPs and their respective supervisory AIG of Police in Commands and Zones to give full effect to the above clarifications and ensure that non-IMN Muslims are not in any way restricted from exercising their freedom of religion, worship and peaceful assembly,” the IGP said.
“Ban on procession, applicable to IMM members only. Non-IMN Muslims marking Ashura free to observe peaceful procession.
“Following the deluge of enquiries concerning the ban on procession on the proscribed Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), it has become absolutely imperative to clarify that the ban on processions is applicable to members of the proscribed Islamic Movement in Nigeria only.
“Against this backdrop, Muslims marking the commemoration of “Ashura” throughout the country along with other Muslims across the world are free to carry out the annual “Ashura” procession.
“They should, however, do so within the confines of the law and guard against infiltration by unscrupulous elements who may want to take advantage of the event to cause disruption of public peace, order and security.”
IMN Defies Police
Members of Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), also known as Shiites, have disregarded police order which said the sect must not embark on any procession, Concise News reports.
The group on Tuesday morning, September 10th, embarked on its Ashura mourning procession in Abuja.
The Ashura procession is an annual religious ritual carried out by the Shia Islamic sect all over the world on September 10.
Participants, including men, women, and children, held the procession for a few kilometres from Berger Roundabout to Wuse and hurriedly concluded the exercise to avoid a confrontation with security personnel.
At 8.0am, Shiites members were already on the road, causing gridlock in the commercial area, but there was no report of any incident.