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Falana petitions Osinbajo over continued detention of Elzakzaky

Lagos lawyer, Mr Femi Falana, has petitioned the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, over the continued detention of leader of Islamic Movement of Nigeria, IMN, Sheikh Ibraheem Elzakzaky, and his wife, Zeinab, despite court orders, saying they should be released.

In the petition, entitled, ‘’Request for the release of Sheikh Ibraheem Elzakzaky and his wife from illegal detention,’’  Falana said:  ‘’We are Solicitors to  Sheikh Ibraheem Elzakzaky and his wife,  Hajia Zeinab Elzakzaky  who are currently detained illegally in an undisclosed detention dungeon at Abuja by the State Security Service.

‘’On behalf of our clients we  are compelled to draw Your Excellency’s attention to the following facts.  On December 12, 2015 the  Nigerian Army unleashed unmitigated violence on the Shia Community  in Zaria, Kaduna State under the pretext that there was a plot to assassinate the Chief  of Army Staff, General Yussuf   Buratai. During the violent attack, the Army massacred 347 Shiites including women and children. Aided by the Kaduna State government the Nigerian Army secretly buried the dead bodies of the victims of the barbaric attack in an unmarked grave without any autopsy whatsoever.   Up till now, the bereaved families of the deceased have not been officially informed of the extrajudicial execution of their loved ones.”

‘’Although Sheikh Elzakzaky was  not at the scene of the violent attack the official assailants invaded his  residence at Zaria vi et armis, set the house ablaze, shot at him and his wife and killed three of his children.

‘’Thereafter, the Kaduna state government proceeded to demolish the burnt  house and thereby rendered all the occupants homeless.

‘’While  Sheikh Elzakzaky and his wife  were soaked  in their own blood  they were handed over by the Army   to the State Security Service which took them to a detention centre in Abuja where   they have since been detained without any trial.

‘’Owing to lack of medical attention in detention Sheikh Elzakzaky has lost his right eye and stands the risk of losing the second one.  His request to be flown abroad for urgent medical attention has been treated with disdain by the State Security Service.

‘’To ensure that our clients are kept incommunicado the authorities of the State Security Service have banned their  lawyers from visiting them.

‘’Although  the Judicial Commission of Enquiry set up by Governor Nasir Elrufai to probe the so called clash between the army and the Shiites did not recommend Sheikh Elzakzaky and his wife for trial the State Security Service refused to release them from illegal custody.

‘’As our clients’ detention could not be justified in law we filed an application at the Federal High Court holden at Abuja to secure the enforcement of their fundamental rights to personal liberty, dignity of their persons and fair hearing guaranteed by the Nigerian Constitution.

‘’In  a considered judgment delivered on December 2, 2016 the Federal High Court declared the



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