Niger State: Heavily Armed Soldiers Lock Stadium, Stops Tinubu-Shettima Rally
On Tuesday, security guards closed the entrance to the New Bussa Township Stadium in Niger State’s Borgu Local Government Area, preventing a planned political gathering from taking place.
According to news reports, the Deputy Chief Whip of the Senate, Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, had planned a gathering at the location to promote the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and his running mate, Senator Kassim Shettima.
The event was also intended to promote Hon. Umar Bago, the APC’s governorship candidate in Niger State, and his running mate, Comrade Yakubu Garba.
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The event, scheduled for 11 a.m., could not go ahead as planned because security guards closed the entry and turned away media and supporters who arrived as early as 8.30 a.m.
According to Newsmen, two trucks of heavily armed Mobile Officers were stationed at the stadium’s gate, while normal policemen sealed the gates and barred fans from entering.
Three pickup vans outfitted with firearms and loaded with heavily armed Nigerian Army personnel were also observed patrolling the stadium.
Off the record, a police officer told reporters that the order to seal the stadium came from higher ups.
However, DSP Wasiu Abiodun, spokesman for the Niger State Police, stated that the event was canceled due to concerns of a security breach based on valid intelligence.
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In his words, “The Police had to take over the venue of the planned rally, as a proactive measure due to intelligence received of likely breach of security at the venue.
“Hence, we have to do the needful to avert any possible attack or hijack by suspected miscreants to cause mayhem and breach of peace in the community.
“The Command will not fold its arms and allow act of political violence, avoidable loss of life, destruction of properties and lawlessness.”
According to unconfirmed sources, Governor Sani Abubakar Bello issued the order to halt the march, however at the time of reporting this story, neither the Governor nor Senator Abdullahi had formally responded to the situation.
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