A senator representing Gombe south, Joshua Lidani, who was held hostage by protesters Talasse town in Balanga local government, has been freed. Lidani was forced to take refuge in the residence of the traditional ruler of Talasse after some protesters from the area accosted him. An eyewitness said they sought to “ask him some questions”. One of the protesters, who identified himself as a youth leader, told newsmen that after the protesters forced the police to retreat to a distance to avoid confrontation, soldiers were called. “Even the soldiers were at first confronted by the protesters when they arrived and sought to free the Senator,” he said. He also said sensing danger, the soldiers began to fire indiscriminately into the air forcing the protesters to disperse in different directions. The youth leader said Lidani’s car “is still parked where he left it, and I don’t know how he intends to pick it later, unless if he has given it to the emir”. Earlier, Ibrahim Wala, an activist had announced on Facebook on Monday that Lidani paid an unscheduled visit to Talasse town, the headquarters of Balanga Local Government Area to meet with political associates.
It was reported that the protesters were asking the senator to come out and “answer some of their questions.”He said the grouse of the protesters with Lidani is that “he refused to visit Talasse since his election despite several appeals.” He also said the senator refused to answer or return calls from the people of his constituency “only for him to sneak in today.” He said the police were invited to the scene but they had to retreat to a distance to avoid confrontation with the large crowd. “Apart from those at the emir’s palace, several youth groups have also blocked all other roads the senator may seek to sneak out, not just in Talasse here, but other villages along the road as well,” he said.