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ISLAMIST SECTS' CLASH:9 SUSPECTS IN POLICE NET

By NBF News

The Oyo State Commissioner of Police, Baba Adisa Bolanta yesterday told newsmen that the command had arrested nine suspects in connection with last Sunday's clash between two Islamist sects in Sabo area of Ibadan, the state capital.

The Police, while speaking on phone with the Daily Sun added that the command had launched a manhunt for the preacher, whose sermon was alleged to have sparked off the crisis. He said the command would go to any length to ensure that those directly involved in the fracas are brought to book.

Bolanta also warned the Islamic group against 'any further breakdown of law and order as the command would ensure that anyone arrested would be made to face the full wrath of the law.

Hell was let loose last Sunday when members of Hausawa community in Sabo area of Ibadan rose against one another during the clash leaving no fewer than 13 people seriously injured.

Property including buildings, three mosques and four vehicles were vandalized at the scene of battled, before policemen brought the situation under control.

Dangerous weapons were reportedly used freely. At daggers drawn were members of the Izala sect who suffered the greatest casualty, and the rampaging youths of the Tijaniya/Adriya group.

Trouble reportedly started when the preacher, who was said to have been invited from Jos, Plateau State , by one of the warring groups, started making inciting statements against the other group.

The two groups were said to have disagreed on some Islamic doctrines, which resulted in the two groups using the public address systems to launch verbal attacks on each other.

It was learnt that, the situation degenerated to a level such that the state police command had to intervene, directing the two groups to stop further use of external loudspeakers in their mosques.

To further reaffirm the position of the police, of the group was said to have approached a magistrate's court which delivered its judgment on Friday affirming the position of the command on the use of public address system.

The court had ordered the two groups to limit the use of external loudspeakers to the central mosque in their areas.

Trouble reportedly resurfaced on Sunday when the guest preacher invited by the Izala sect started delivering his sermon with the aid of a loudspeaker.

Aside from the injuries sustained by members of the Izala group, their three mosques in the area were vandalized by the rival group, while four vehicles including two Sport Utility Vehicles (SUV) packed beside their mosque had their windscreen shattered.

Those who sustained various degrees of injuries were said to be receiving treatment at a nearby hospital located around the area.

Fierce looking policemen were sighted roaming the area on Monday to forestall a reoccurrence of Sunday's blood bath.