By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
Kaduna State government has officially labelled the Shiite Islamic Movement of Nigeria, IMN, an insurgent group, as contained in a white paper by the state government in Kaduna, yesterday.
The government’s action came as scores of protesters, yesterday, stormed the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court over the judgment that ordered the unconditional release of Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, the detained leader of IMN, otherwise known as the Shiite sect.
“For all intent and purpose, the IMN is an insurgent group and ought to be treated as such,” the government said in the white paper.
It also said the detained Shiite leader will be held responsible for all acts carried out by the group’s members.
The white paper said: “Members of IMN owe absolute loyalty to Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky. He, therefore, bears responsibility for all the acts of lawlessness committed by the organisation.”
In the white paper, the state government also indicated it might not prosecute the soldiers involved in the killing of over 300 members of IMN in December last year, and might leave their prosecution to the Federal Government.
Protest against court order
Meanwhile, scores of protesters, yesterday, stormed the Abuja Division of the Federal High Court over the judgment that ordered the unconditional release of Sheikh El-Zakzaky.
Brandishing placards and banners, the protesters, who acted under the aegis of The Coalition for Good Governance and Change Initiative, CGGCI, urged the National Judicial Council, NJC, to immediately probe Justice Gabriel Kolawole who gave the judgement.
In a letter they forwarded to the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Ibrahim Auta, the group insisted that the verdict, which was delivered last Friday, was a “dangerous precedence.”
They said the ruling “has dangerous implication for IPOB/MASSOB separatists, militants and that even killer herdsmen will try to use the judiciary in the future to stand logic on its head.”