There was palpable apprehension in Gwarimpa area of Abuja on Tuesday, after a bloody clash between the soldiers and members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN), popularly known as Shiites.
The IMN members were marching to Abuja in commemoration of the annual symbolic Arbaeen trek from Mararaba in Nasarawa state, when the soldiers stopped them.
The faceoff resulted in a traffic gridlock that left many commuters trying to get to their workplaces stranded.
The Shiites, who were moving in a procession along the AYA-Kubwa expressway blocked the expressroad before they were dispersed by the Army.
Several vehicles were also vandalised by the Shiites who resorted to hauling stones at the soldiers.
Some female Shiites members occupying a vehicle headed for the city centre were reportedly assaulted by some soldiers after identifying them.
They were later put in a van and whisked away to an unknown destination.
Also, some passers-by were not spared of the harassment by the soldiers.
The impact of the face-off was also felt across the city which experienced an unusual lockdown as
soldiers and policemen were stationed in many parts of the city to forestall security breach.
In July, a Kaduna State High Court discharged and acquitted the IMN leader, Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, who spent about seven years in detention.
El-Zakzaky was arrested after some of his followers clashed with soldiers in Zaria, Kaduna State, in 2015.