President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday threatened protesting members of members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, otherwise known as Shi’ites, that his government might be forced to act with maximum force to defend the interest of the majority of Nigerians.
Mr. Buhari made the threat on Tuesday in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, warning that the protesting IMN members were testing the patience of the Federal Government with their violent protests in Abuja.
He called on any group carrying out violent protests to stop now, else the government would take decisive actions against them.
“Let nobody or group doubt or test our will to act in the higher interest of the majority of our citizens,” he was quoted as saying.
Reacting to the killing of Deputy Commissioner of Police Usman Umar and National Youth Service Corps member, Precious Owolabi, during Monday’s protest by the sect, the president said he was deeply touched by their death, condoling with their families and the management of Channels TV, where the corps member was attached to.
The two were “law-abiding, hard-working and vibrant Nigerians with a promising future,” he said.
The IMN members have been protesting the continued detention of their leader, Ibrahim Zakzaky without trial.
Zakzaky has been in detention since 2015.
The Shi’ites have vowed to continue to march on the streets of Abuja until he is released.