The post-election crisis that swept northern parts of the country has left no fewer than 121 people dead and hundreds more injured.
According to reliable sources, about 15,000 people have been displaced, many of them seeking shelter in police stations and army barracks.
The largest number of casualties are from Kaduna where some 50 people are feared dead and Kano where the figure has been put at 30. The casualty list so far puts the number of the dead in Gombe at 17, with neighbouring Bauchi State recording 16 and Katsina State 8.
The commissioner of police in Bauchi State, John Abakasanga, disclosed that four members of the National Youth Service Corps had been killed, as well as one divisional crime officer (DCO) and one female corporal.
The state chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Rev. Father Lawi Potki, also confirmed that he saw 10 dead people. The secretary of the Red Cross in Bauchi, Adamu Abubakar, placed the number of the wounded in the state at 17 and those displaced at 3,500. The Red Cross also confirmed the death of eight people in Katsina in the aftermath of the violence. According to Abubakar, 500 displaced people were at the DIC Camp, Gudun village, while many more were sighted at Sha Da Wanka Barracks and the Bauchi State Police headquarters.
Unconfirmed reports from different neighbourhoods in Kano indicate that 13 people were killed by the police in a friendly fire in the course of trying to quell the violence.
The state police commissioner, Dan’Azumi Doma, told LEADERSHIP that, officially, he had received no information of any deaths. He however said 120 people had been arrested and 94 of them remanded in custody.
The state police commissioner in Gombe State, Suleiman Lawan, was also unable to confirm the number of casualties but LEADERSHIP gathered from the chief medical director at the Gombe Specialist Hospital, Dr. James Madi, that five people were confirmed dead at the hospital and 30 others treated for injuries. Twelve people were also confirmed dead from the Gombe Federal Medical Centre with 71 receiving treatment from injuries, even as some people had been discharged.
The deputy inspector-general (DIG) of Police in charge of operations in Abuja, Audu Abubakar, who was also in Gombe yesterday to inspect the extent of damage, said that the police would be able to confirm the casualties today. From Kaduna, hospitals are reported to be overflowing with the injured.
Travellers caught unawares on the Abuja-Kaduna highway spoke of at least eight deaths. Along the Kaduna- Zaria highway seven persons were reported dead while in Zaria city, the number of those killed was put at 10. The remaining deaths came from Kaduna City as well as the spillover in Kafanchan and Hunkuyi.
DIG Abubakar who was also in Kaduna said that more security personnel were being drafted to the state.
Samuel Aruwan, Abdulrahman Tonga, Yau Waziri, Sani Muh’d Sani and Abdulaziz Abdulaziz
20 April, 2011| Leadership, Nigeria|