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Army vs Shiites ‘This is how Boko Haram started,’ Sultan of Sokoto says

The Sultan, who spoke in his position as the President-General of the Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), said further that terrorist sect, Boko Haram became a serious problem in Nigeria due to an incident similar to the Zaria attacks.

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The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa'ad Abubakar III has cautioned the Nigerian military following the recent battle between soldiers and members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, popularly known as Shiites, in Zaria, Kaduna State.

The Sultan, who spoke in his position as the President-General of the Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), said further that terrorist sect, Boko Haram became a serious problem in Nigeria due to an incident similar to the Zaria attacks.

His remarks were contained in a statement released on his behalf by NSCIA Secretary General, Ishaq Oloyede, today, December 14, 2015.

It reads in part:

“While there are claims and counter-claims on what actually precipitated the latest heart-rending incident,‎ the NSCIA‎ urges the authorities to exercise restraint.”

“The history of the circumstances that engendered the outbreak of militant insurgency in the past, with cataclysmic consequences that Nigeria is yet to recover from, should not be allowed to repeat itself.”

“We urge the federal government to immediately constitute a judicial commission of inquiry to thoroughly unravel the immediate and remote causes of the current mayhem. Besides, the commission should also investigate the past incidents involving the movement so that justice can be done.”

“The sanctity of human life is inviolable ‎in Islam and painstaking efforts should be made at all times to prevent bloodshed. In other words, life is sacred and the fundamental responsibility of government is to guarantee the security of life and property.”

“While no group should be allowed to constitute law unto itself or arrogate unconstitutional powers to itself under any guise, the fact still remains that the position of the law is clear when there is any breach.”

“Therefore, as order is the first law of heaven, normalcy and restraint should be taken seriously. May the Almighty Allah guide our leaders right and gu‎ard us Nigerians against our own indiscretion at all times.”

Soldiers engaged the Shiites in a battle on Saturday, December 12, after the group allegedly attempted to assassinate Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai.

Troops surrounded the home of the group’s leader, Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky and the resulting gunfight is said to have led to the deaths of Zakzaky’s wife and son and also the group’s Second-in-Command, Sheik Muhammad Turi.

Zakzaky himself has reportedly been arrested by the army while the group’s spokesperson, Ibrahim Musa said that 500 members were killed.

Musa also denied that the Shiites had attempted to murder Buratai.

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Was Army right to attack Shiites?»

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