Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal on Saturday afternoon, declared a 24-hour curfew in Sokoto metropolis over a protest that had rocked the city.
The Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the governor, Muhammad Bello, said the decision was “in pursuance of peace and order in Sokoto metropolis and the entire state.”
Palpable fear enveloped Sokoto metropolis on Saturday as protesters in their hundreds trooped into the streets to express their displeasure over the detention of two suspects arrested by the Police over the killing of Deborah Samuel, a 200-level Home Economics student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, over alleged blasphemy.
Major streets such as Ahmadu Bello Way, Kano Road, where banks are located and Emir Yahaya Road, in the early hours of the day, were deserted with business places and shops closed.
However, attempts by the protesters to attack the Palace of the Sultan of Sokoto, His Eminence Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, were resisted by security men on the ground.
The grouse of the protesters was Sultan Abubakar’s condemnation of the dastard killing of the late Deborah Samuel.
Unperturbed by the presence of security personnel in some strategic areas within the state capital, the protesters also stormed Ahmadu Bello Way church line, where Catholic, Anglican, Baptist, ECWA and C&S churches are located.
Attempts by the protesters to set the St. Mary Catholic Church ablaze were also resisted by armed security personnel drafted to the area, who fired several canisters of teargas to disperse the irate protesters.
The protesters, however, succeeded in burning down a car around St. Mary Catholic Church.
Radio Nigeria reports that the situation is calmed while police are moving around to ensure members of the public adhere to the curfew order.
Reporting by Nasir Malali; Editing by Abdullahi Lamino