Leader of the proscribed Islamic Movement of Nigeria, IMN, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, and his wife Zeenat, have been reported to be their way back to the country three days after embarking on a medical trip to India.
Sheikh Zakzaky and his entourage departed New Delhi in a commercial airline at 5pm Nigerian time today.
In a video message sent through his office, the Sheikh said it was decided that they would be flown back to Nigeria.
He prayed that may that be the best option in the circumstances.
A top member of of Islamic Human Right Commission (IHRC) which negoatiated the medical treatment in India said that the Nigerian government’s interference and scuttling of the whole process rather than supervision as ordered by the court is the direct cause of the impasse.
El-Zakzaky, and his wife Zeenat, yesterday said they would not accept treatment from doctors at Medanta Hospital, New Delhi, India
They alleged collusion between Nigerian security agents and foreign interests to frustrate their treatment and recovery.
He had lamented that “They didn’t even allow me to go to the next room, I started asking myself, all these while I’ve been in detention, I’ve never seen this type. Even if I’m in the cell, they usually lock us up around 9 p.m. and open the cell around 7 a.m. and they allow us to go anywhere we want in the area we are. “Even Kirikiri prison will not affect me psychologically like this one. It will not be possible for us to come out of detention just to get medical attention and now find ourself in another form of detention”
But reacting to El-Zakzaky’s allegation the Federal government said ‘On 12th August, 2019, El-Zakzaky and other members of the entourage went to India via Dubai. It is to be noted that El-Zakzaky particularly chose Medanta Hospital, India. However, on reaching Dubai, El-Zakzaky began to display ulterior motives against laid down procedures.
He requested that his passport be handed over to him but the State officials would not budge to his pressure. The situation became worse in India as he refused to subject himself to preliminary medical checks.
In addition, he demanded free movement and access to visitors of all kinds as well as requested to be allowed to check into a 5-Star Hotel instead of being admitted in the hospital.
The request was refused on the ground that he came into the country for medicals and not as a tourist (more so that his Visa was issued on medical grounds and not for tourism).
He also demanded that Police protection be withdrawn from him by the Indian authorities. Against medical ethics and standard practice, he requested to nominate Doctors of his choice to join the ones tasked by Medanta Hospital to perform medical treatment on him and his wife.
This created a stalemate, which the Hospital insisted that he would not dictate to it on the choice of medical personnel to carry the required medical treatment. Frustrated by his antics, the Indian authorities have expressed willingness to return him to Nigeria with immediate effect.
This is on the account that they will not allow him use their country to internationalize his group’s activities. Against this background, the Nigerian government wishes to commend the stand of the Indian Government as well as apologize to her for the unruly behaviour of El-Zakzaky.
Similarly, the attention of the public and indeed the international community is hereby drawn to these unfortunate developments.
The government also wishes to use this opportunity to affirm its readiness to undertake the prosecution of El-Zakzaky through due process if and when he is returned to the country. On this note, his foul cry that he is being held in circumstances worse than he was in Nigeria should be disregarded.