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‘We Thought We Were About To Die’— Eyewitnesses Recount Kano Riot



‘We Thought We Were About To Die’— Eyewitnesses Recount Kano Riot

Some Nigerians who experienced rioting in Sabongari in Kano State told Tropics NigeriaReporters there was no intervention from police officers as persons with stones, knives and sticks looted, burnt properties and attacked road users.

Kano youths had on Tuesday joined the nationwide #EndSARS protests.

But hoodlums hijacked the demonstration, vandalising malls and business places. Cars were also smashed and burnt.

Unfortunately, two girls lost their lives at Ahmadiyya Line. The girls, who were passersby, were attacked by the hoodlums with machetes and daggers, who inflicted deep cuts on them.

Speaking to Tropics NigeriaReporters, some eyewitnesses said they were fortunate to survive the skirmish as the violence quickly spiralled into attacks and reprisals between the two dominant religions in the country.

A lady, who identified herself as Bright, said she was caught up in the crossfire along the airport road.

“I was on my way to make a delivery. The cab I took followed the Airport Road. Unknown to me, the riot had already spread to that part of town,” she said.

Bright said thugs had amassed in front of St. Thomas, a catholic church along her path with her cab behind three others when she saw the crudely armed hoodlums.

She added, “There were three or four cars in front of mine. All of us in the cab were Christians. We told the cab driver to stop, but he said he could not stop in the middle of the road.

“It was only the cab driver in the car I entered that was Muslim. As I kept telling him to stop, some other guys were coming at our back. They were the ones who saved us that day.”

Bright said the armed gang behind outnumbered those in front.

She said when they caught up with the vehicle she was in, the driver was stopped, allowing her and the other passengers to escape danger.

Another witness, who wished to remain anonymous, said she was held up in a compound for hours before one of the occupants clothed her in a veil and drove her home.

The lady said this incident happened at a close distance to the Nigeria armed forces base along the same airport road.

According to her, she ran into a compound opposite a shop she had stopped to drink water, to avoid the violent crowd.

She said, “I was on my way to work at Nigerian Bottling company on Tuesday morning. There were #EndSARS protesters along the way.

“In a flash, they were dispersed by hoodlums we call Yandaba and people were running for their lives.

“After some hours, one of the men in the compound came out and said we should go so that the Yandaba would not do anything to us. When I came out, I saw police officers, but they were not trying to disperse them. One of the thugs said in Hausa, ‘we will kill you today.’ I had to run back inside.”

After she was kitted up in a veil and driven to safety by one of the kindhearted residents in the compound, she was forced to step out again to pick her nieces and nephews from school.

“When I was coming back with my sister’s children, the ‘keke’ I took was attacked by two Igbo guys. They said one of their brothers was killed and another had his leg broken. I tried to beg them, but they would not listen. I ran off with my sister’s children, but I think the ‘keke’ guy survived.”

The lady said her area was insecure and she had been unable to return to work since Tuesday.

“We have been unable to sleep. They tried to attack us on Wednesday. Everyone was out with a cutlass; I’m holding one as I’m talking to you. There is no security here; it’s the vigilante in the area that is protecting us.”

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