World Bulletin / News Desk
Nigeria's secret police announced on Tuesday arresting seven persons on suspected involvement in the assassination of a prominent anti-Boko Haram scholar.
"They said they killed the scholar because of his support for western education and his anti-Boko Haram preaching," Marilyn Ogar, spokesperson of the country's directorate of state security, told Anadolu Agency.
Sheikh Muhammad Auwal Adam Albani, a prominent Salafist, was murdered along with his wife on February 1 while returning from one of his routine lecture series in Tudun Wada suburb of the ancient city of Zaria in Nigeria's Northwest Kaduna state.
Ogar identified the suspects as Yakub Abdullahi, 42; Ibrahim Shuaibu, 22; Bilyaminu Usman, 22; Yasir Ibrahim Salihu, 35; Sahabi Ismail, 27; Umar Farouk Ismail, 35; and Musa Abubakar, 54.
"They have all confessed to being members of the Boko Haram sect, having joined individually between 2009 and 2012," said the spokesperson, without giving the date of their arrest.
"They are among the kingpins of the sect in the Kaduna-Niger axis of the country."
The spokesperson said Salihu was a graduate of English literature from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
At the time of his arrest he was head of records and billing department at Horizon Medical Centre.
"A cache of weapons, including AK 47 rifles, were recovered from the suspects," Ogar said.
She added that another suspect, only identified as Kabiru, was killed while attempting to snatch a weapon from one of the security operatives who wanted to arrest him.
Ogar said investigations continue into the activities of the suspects after which they would be taken to court on charges of murder and membership in an outlawed organization.
Nigeria, the U.S. and Canada have all outlawed and branded Boko Haram as a terrorist group.
The militant group has been blamed for the killing of thousands of civilian since 2009 when it launched its campaign of terror across Nigeria's north.
Several soldiers and other security agents have been killed as Nigeria seeks to curb its activities, which include attack on places of worship, security formations and public buildings.
The group has killed hundreds in different attacks in the past few weeks alone.Last Mod: 04 Mart 2014, 13:20