The Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG), Thursday night, says it has established contact with its two leaders; Nastura Ashir Shariff and Balarabe Rufai, who were taken away in the morning in Kaduna.
The spokesperson of CNG, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, in a statement made available to Daily Trust, said, “I have been in personal contact with the national Coordinator Balarabe Rufai who confirmed their release and their condition.
“At around 10.30 pm, Mr Rufai called and said their handsets have been returned to them and they were released and would give details of what transpired later.
“Shariff also spoke to me via Rufai’s phone and confirmed both were in good health.”
‘How they were arrested’
Speaking with Daily Trust earlier in the day, Suleiman said both officials were arrested after the Department of State Services (DSS)’s director in the state, warned CNG against going ahead with a press briefing scheduled for NAF Club, Kaduna.
Suleiman said the group was unable to trace where they were taken to.
“Both their phone lines have been unreachable for the past two hours but the Director of the Department of State Services (DSS) in Kaduna had called us earlier today and tried to threaten us against going ahead with the briefing.
“We stood our ground and insisted on our right to freedom of association and expression.
“A few minutes afterwards, we were called from the NAF Club and informed that they were ordered from above to refuse us the use of the hall.
“We then went to tell the pressmen who were already gathered at the venue and told them of the development and asked them to disperse because we had suspended the briefing.
“As we left the NAF Club and drove along a road adjacent to Nagogo road, a hooded Peugeot car blocked the lead car which was conveying the two officials and ordered them into the Peugeot and sped off,” he said earlier in the day.
Daily Trust reports that some suspected hoodlums had on December 14, 2020, invaded the venue of a meeting organised by the Coalition of Northern groups at Arewa House, Kaduna.
Earlier in June, Nastura Sheriff was arrested in Katsina State where he led a protest against killings by bandits across Northern Nigeria.