Fred Itua, Abuja
Days after some residents of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) were killed by hoodlums masquerading as protesters, some of the arrowheads have been arrested.
FCT Minister, Muhammad Bello, made the revelation while breafing newsmen after on-the-spot assessment of Apo and Dutse Alhaji areas.
He said the visit to the affected areas was to enable the Administration ascertain the level of damage and decide on how to compensate victims.
A fortnight ago, youths took to the streets of Abuja to protest alleged killings and brutality by Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), a unit of the Nigeria Police Force.
The protesters for several days, blocked major roads in Abuja. Key Government buildings were occupied for several days.
However, the protests took a worrisome dimension on Tuesday, when hoodlums infiltrated the the civil agitation and caused severe mayhem in Apo and Dutse Alhaji areas.
Cars were burnt, houses razed and about six persons were confirmed dead. Normalcy was restored to the troubled spots by a combined team of security agents.
During the visit, the Minister said the FCT Police Command has already arrested arrowheads of the violent protests. According to him, security agents are still making efforts to arrest more culprits.
He called on community leaders and heads of market associations to fish out those who participated in the violent protests, vandalisation of Government property and killing of people.
He said: “As I speak, arrests have been made. The FCT Police Commissioner has informed me. Those who participated and carried out the attacks will face the wrath of the law. We will ensure that is done.
“They’re getting more intelligence and in the coming days, more culprits are expected to be arrested. We will ensure that the Territory is peaceful and that no resident is killed or property destroyed.”
On plans to compensate those whose cars, houses and businesses were destroyed, the Minister said a Committee has been set up to entertain complaints. He said compensations will be made.
He said: “We have seen the level of damage and I must admit that it is unfortunate. However, a Committee has been set up look at all the issues. Those who lost anything should approach the Committee.
“Compensations will be paid to those who have genuine cases. All the issues will be resolved as soon as possible. We call on everyone to live together and avoid anything that will lead to any disturbances.”