Pandemonium broke out in Ikun-Ekiti, Moba Local Government Area of Ekiti State, on Tuesday, as masqueraders attacked Muslim faithful who were breaking their fast in the Central Mosque of the town.
Our source learnt that the attack occurred around 7:00p.m, on Tuesday, when the Muslims gathered in the mosque to observe the Maghrib prayer after breaking their Ramadan fast.
It was gathered that the masqueraders felt affronted that the Muslims had the effrontery to call for prayers when they were still celebrating their Egungun festival, and to teach the Islamic faithful some lesson, the masqueraders attacked the worshippers with cudgels, stone and iron and inflicted injuries on them.
About five of the worshippers were said to sustained varying degrees of injuries.
The assailants allegedly smashed destroyed the two cars parked at the entrance of the mosque with axe and stones.
Acting Imam of the mosque, Alh. Abdul-Rasak Abubakar-Bello, was rushed to the Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, Ado-Ekiti, where he received stitches on his head.
Bello, who spoke to Daily Sun on his hospital bed, said the Muslims were held hostage in the mosque for four hours by the masqueraders, who also threatened to kill them.
He said: “There was no way we could escape because they waiting for us outside after initially attacking us inside the mosque with iron and woody rods. When we succeded in locking ourselves inside the mosque, they started throwing stones at us.”
Bello accused the Divisional Police Office of snubbing the rescue calls made to him by the Muslim community as he refused to send his men there.
The Muslim community also accused the traditional ruler of the town, Oba Olatunde Olusola, of supervising the attack on them.
Oba Olusola neither picked calls from our correspondent nor responded to a text message sent to him on the attack as of the time of filing this report.
Condemning the attack, the National Council of Muslim Youth Organisations, accused the monarch and the Police of complicity in the attack.
In a statement jointly signed by the state Coordinator of NACOMYO, Tajudeen Ahmed, and Secretary, Musa Tijani, stated that the monarch had earlier warned the Muslims to keep their women away from the mosque, on Tuesday, being the grand finale day of their masquerade festival.
“HRH David Olatunde Olusola, was said to have written a letter to the Muslim Community of Ikun-Ekiti to ensure that their women are kept indoors.
“The Muslim Community of Ikun-Ekiti ensured total compliance by keeping all their female members indoor.
“While the innocent and fasting Muslims were being tormented, the Muslims made frantic efforts to reach out to the police authorities at Ikun and Moba Local Government Area respectively to come to their rescue but the DPO turned down the invitation of the Muslims and dissuaded the police from going to the scene on the basis that the Onikun of Ikun Ekiti has confirmed to the DPO that there is no crisis whatsoever at Ikun Ekiti.
“On our part, we condemn the invasion of the Ikun-Ekiti Central Mosque by the masqueraders and the monumental assault meted on the fasting Muslims. We see the invasion as an abominable act that is most sacrilegious. It is a clear cut defilement of the sacred mosque and an unnecessary provocation of the Muslim faithful.”