By Abdulmumin Murtala, Kano
The peaceful protest tagged End insecurity Now by youth groups of the 19 northern states has been dispersed by thugs carrying machetes and sticks in Kano.
The protest which on Thursday saw some hundreds of youths carrying a banner and placards calling on the Nigerian authorities to end banditry, Boko Haram and rape in the region, started from Kabuga heading towards the BUK old site where it was clampdown on by the armed thugs.
Though no death was recorded, it is confirmed that several persons have received injuries of varying degrees including journalists present there.
Aliyu Samba, a journalist with Kannywood TV was injured at the scene and told newsmen that policemen were present while they were being lynched by thugs.
“We started the protest from Kabuga and were moving peacefully towards BUK old site. Slogans like ” we want peace” and “Our lives matter” were chanted by the protesters. There were policemen behind and around us as the protest moved on.
“I was in the front making live stream coverage on social media. All of a sudden I heard noise of people coming from behind my back. Immediately I turned round I saw thugs carrying machetes and metals who immediately started hitting us.
“They disrupted and scattered the protest. They seized the protest banner and neatly folded it. They charged at me and beat me up and seized my phone. I summoned courage to get my phone back while they continued to beat me.
“The police were standing by the side watching. No thug was arrested. It was merely a protest calling on the government to stop banditry and incessant killings in the north as well as rape” he said.
Another journalist, Abba Gwale of Leadership newspaper, also a victims of the attack by thugs, said the thugs brought the busy way to a standstill as they struck and injured the protesters.
“I was there to cover the event which started at Kabuga towards the BUK old site. Before we reached Kofar Fanfo, thugs appeared from nowhere carrying machetes, metals and stones. They dispersed everybody and brought the busy way to standstill. One of the thugs hit me on the hand with a metal and I am seriously injured. No life was lost but several people were injured” he stated.