On Monday, the Katsina State Police Command announced a ban of all forms of processions, rallies and unlawful assemblies by “religious groups or any group of people” in the state.
The announcement was contained in a statement signed by the command’s Public Relations Officer, Salisu Agaisa, and made available to journalists in Katsina yesterday.
Mr. Agaisa said that “any person(s) caught violating this order will be arrested and prosecuted”.
“The command wishes to inform the general public that it has banned all forms of processions, rallies, gatherings and unlawful assemblies under any guise throughout the state”, he said.
The police command also urged parents and guardians not to allow their children to be involved in such acts.
“We are calling on parents and guardians to closely monitor their children and prevent them from taking part in such acts, as they could easily be influenced by unscrupulous elements to threaten the relative peace being enjoyed in the state”, the police spokesman said.
The ban occurs despite several court rulings that uphold the rights of citizens to peaceful assembly.
In a related development, the Kano State Police Command has warned religious organizations in the state to desist from conducting illegal religious processions or face the wrath of the law.
The Commissioner of Police in the state, Rabiu Yusuf, who gave the warning in a statement signed by the command Public Relations Officer, DSP Magaji Musa Majia, said the command would not allow religious organizations in the state to violate other peoples’ rights in the name of procession.
“The Command will continue to respect the Right to Religion but will not allow any group to misuse the right by breaking the law and infringement of other peoples’ rights in the community and public Roads”, the statement said.
CP Yusuf boldly warned that the Command would not relent in ensuring law and order prevails on any religious group or sect that is trying to become a threat to the public peace and Order.
He, however, called on the people of the state to cooperate with the command in its effort to rid the state from all forms crimes.