Following reports that four churches were attacked during their early morning services to cross-over the year in Ilorin Kwara State, the Police has issued a conflicing report, claiming the alleged attackers were youths prevented from holiday a carnival in the area.
Initial reports said Muslims attacked Christian worshippers in four Churches during cross over at 2a.m. this morning.
One report alleged that a uniformed security personnel was seen leading the hoodlums,shooting sporadically. many were injured, church auditoriums, and cars were destroyed. It was also alleged that many innocent women were raped during the attack but the rampaging Youths.
Another source however stated policemen in the Taiwo Isale area where the churches were meeting were overwhemed by the rampaging youths and turned back.
The affected Churches were C.A.C .Oke- Isegun, Methodist Church Cathedral, St. Joseph Church Cathedral, and UMCA Church.
In apparent exasperation Monday, the head of the Youth wing of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Engineer Daniel Kadzai asked in a post on social media: “How long will this continue?”
The President of the Nigerian Christian Graduate Fellowship, Prof. Charles Adisa, said he confirmed the attack on some chrches, adding that those involved in the attack must face the wrath of the law.
However, a statement from Police spokesman for Kwara State, Deputy Superintendent of Police Ajayi Okasanmi, reads:
“The Kwara State Police Command wishes to assure the good people of Kwara state, of its capacity to deal decisively with any body arrested, for being a part of the breakdown of law and order that was witnessed in Taiwo Isale area of Ilorin, by hoodlums early this morning, in spite the peace and harmony being enjoyed in the state before, during the yuletide and even now.
“At about 02;00am of today, some youths that were prevented from carrying out what was termed New year carnival by the community leaders of the area for fear of the process turning into a security threat, owing to previous years experiences.
“In protest to the denial, the youths resorted into throwing bangers indiscriminately at all gatherings in the vicinity including religious gatherings celebrating the new year cross -over services, three (3) persons were injured in the resulting stampede, both the catholic, methodist and other churches in the area,including a muslim group called Quareeb team, holding their programme in an adjoining school were attacked, some vehicles belonging to both worshippers were damaged.
“It is important to note, that the attack has no religious undertone. It is simple an unlawful act by the disgruntled youths of the area, as both the Christian and Muslim gatherings in the area werr attacked.
“Ten (10) suspects have been arrested, the injured already taken to the hospital and are responding to treatment. Investigation into the matter has commenced.
“Good people of Kwara are admonished to continue with their lawful endeavours and disregard the insinuation that the crisis was between the Muslim and Christian, as Kwara state is known for her harmonious relationship among all religious group, please.”