From Paul Orude, Bauchl

The All Progressives Congress (APC) Supporters Group in Bauchi State has condemned the violence that trailed protest by students of Abubakar Tatari Ali Polytechnic, Bauchi, on Tuesday, saying the process was alledgdly hijacked by miscreants.

The students were protesting the indefinite strike declared by the Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the five state-owned tertiary institutions to press home certain demands from the state government.

The ATAP students were enraged being prevented from writing their examinations which were to commence on the day the strike was declared.

Reports had it that cars and property belonging to lecturers and the institution were vandalised.

The APC group condemns the development, urging the Police and the State Government thoroughly investigation it to unravel the sponsors of thugs who allegedly hijacked the protest by the students

Some students blocked the Bauchi-Jos Expressway, preventing motorists from passing the road during the protest.

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In a statement on Thursday, leader of the 41 APC Supporters Group in the state, Hon. Sallau Kafi, said they condemned the action.

“The members of our group had a meeting unanimously to agree to issue this press statement to call on security agencies to investigate the matter and dig into the root of the matter,” he said.

Kafi said that hoodlums and political thugs took advantage of the situation barricading the Bauchi-Jos Federal highway to demonstrate against the strike, while attacking the passersby and security personnel.

He said the miscreants and hoodlums resorted to burning of tyres, smashing of peoples’ vehicles, damaging properties, extortion of mobile phones and looting some shops situated opposite the school before the arrival of police anti-riot squad to the scene who tried to appeal to the students’ leaders, but yielded no positive result.

The APC chieftain said that the protesting thugs stoned dangerously at the Police team which made the police officers sustain serious injuries.

“We urged the security agencies to investigate into the circumstances surrounding the protest and we urged law-abiding citizens in the state to stay away from all forms of criminality and stop politicising the matter, especially our party members the APC who are taking the advantages of the protest and attacking the government in the media,” he said.

“As a true APC and founding members of the Party that has Bauchi State at heart, we disassociate ourselves with those bad politicians and we will do anything possible within our capacity as a lover of the state to assist the government and security agencies to fish out the perpetrators”
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