Presidency denies attack on Buhari in Abuja mosque
• No right thinking person will contemplate such action
The presidency yesterday dismissed as untrue, reports that President Muhammadu Buhari was attacked last Friday and escaped being lynched by suspected irate members of the Shiites Movement of Nigeria at the National Mosque, Abuja.
It said that no right-thinking group will contemplate such an action considering the security implication of doing so.
Specifically, online reports had it that the president, who came to the mosque for the second time since his inauguration in 2015 for the wedding of his brother-in-law, Hamza, was attacked by a large group of the irate worshippers immediately after the end of the Friday prayers.
But other reports said that the security operatives attached to the president, sensing the danger, quickly warded off the attackers and swiftly created a barricade, which provided a shield for the president.
The worshippers, who it was gathered, were shouting, “you are a murderer, an unjust leader and hypocrite,” were blocked by the security operatives, even as the members insisted “we’re ready to die, you can kill us all.”
It would seem that the irate protesters had foreknowledge of the president’s coming to the mosque, and had mobilized against him. Julius Berger had earlier in the day erected high barricades around the mosque, which gave out that the president was going to attend Hamza’s wedding.
However, reacting to The Guardian’s inquiry via telephone yesterday, Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, described the attack on President Buhari as untrue.
“People don’t notice what has been going on around them. The Shiites have been doing this in about five selected mosques in FCT for several months.
“So, there’s nothing extraordinary about it. They’ve always chanted for the freedom of their leader in several mosques over a long period of time for several months.
“So, the fact that the president was in the national mosque didn’t make any difference. They would have done it without him anyway, because they have done it every Friday. They (Shiites) were just chanting slogans.‘’
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