A professor has been killed in Kibiya Local Government Area of Kano State after he was mistaken for a member of the dreaded Islamic sect, Boko Haram.
The deceased, Prof. Ahmad Falaki(pictured), was the director, Institute of Agriculture Research (IAR) of the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria and was heading to Kano from Ningi in Bauchi State with his brother, and driver last Saturday when his journey was dogged by misfortune.
His official car’s tyre punctured at Kibiya and had to be replaced. The repair coincided with the time Boko Haram members attacked Kibiya police station, and at gun point snatched his car and used it to escape.
According to the deceased’s brother, Abbas Mustapha Falaki who escaped death, the police and the villagers attacked them thinking they were Boko Haram members.
“We had a flat tyre in Fala village of Tudun Wada LGA of Kano State while returning from Bauchi State. It was while we were there that Boko Haram members riding on seven motorcycles came to us and demanded for the professor’s Toyota Hilux vehicle. The driver looked at the professor’s eyes and he asked him to give it to them. They jumped into the car and sped off. They did not harm us as we didn’t argue with them,” he said.
He said when the militants left, the professor asked them to trek to Fala village to get another vehicle to Kano. While trekking to the village, the professor made some calls to Kano.
“When we got to the village, the people started suspecting us because some of them saw us while we were trying to change our flat tyre on the outskirts of the village. But we told them that our car had been snatched by some gunmen. The professor told them to help us get another vehicle because it was around 6.pm,” he said.
He added that while they were waiting for the vehicle, a team of policemen arrived from Kibiya and the villagers suddenly pounced on them.
“The professor quickly showed the policemen his ABU identity card and asked them to stop the villagers. But the policemen did not, and the locals continued to stab him with knives and inflict machete cuts in many places. I ran into the bush but a police officer shot at my direction.
“I thought the bullet had hit me so I fell down. The villagers came to where I was and stabbed me on my face and other places. They threw me and professor into the police van. When we got to Kibiya police division, the policemen were celebrating that they had killed Boko Haram members,” he said.
Abbas said he told the policemen that they were not Boko Haram members and that the man killed was Professor Falaki of the ABU.
“It was while we were there that the professor’s driver who ran into the bush was brought in. When operatives of the Kano Special Anti Robbery Squad (SARS) came, they interrogated me and the driver and discovered that we were not Boko Haram members,” he said.