The Zamfara State Police Command said on Monday that it had arrested 23 persons who were involved in a protest in Tsafe town where firearms were allegedly used by the protesters.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Usman Belel, made this known to journalists in Gusau, the state capital after the restoration of peace and normalcy in the affected area.
He said the command was particularly disturbed to discover that some of the protesting youths allegedly carried guns and fired shots to scare people after which they burnt several vehicles at the local government secretariat.
He said: “Although arrests were still going on in the local government headquarters, Tsafe and its environs, those arrested would help in investigations in order to fish out the perpetrators and their sponsors.”
The residents of Tsafe and environs, particularly Kucheri Village, woke up on Monday morning to face hundreds of youth who blocked the highway with bonfire and interrupted travelers from Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara from passing to other parts of the country as well as those coming to the three states.
The rampaging youth were said to have taken over a planned peaceful demonstration by Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camped in the area who felt they had over stayed and wanted to return to their villages.
The protesters had burned several vehicles and offices in the local government secretariat including the chairman’s office and offices allocated to some international non-governmental organisations operating in the area.
The mayhem was finally quelled by a combined team of security personnel who dispersed the protesters and cleared the path to traffic.
The Commissioner of Police said a detachment of the command’s officers and men would “remain in the area until we are fully satisfied that there is peace.”