Followers of Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, the detained leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN).also known as Shi’ite, have accused the Federal Government of plotting his death through poisoning.
The Free Zakzaky Committee of the IMN made the allegation after a Kaduna State High Court adjourned hearing in El-Zakzaky’s application for permission for him and his wife, Zinat, to travel to India for medical attention.
They alleged that their leader was obviously being poisoned in detention, claiming that “Zakzaky has more than 20 times the toxic levels of lead poison in his body”.
El-Zakzaky, who has been in detention since 2015, said if granted the permission to travel, he and his wife would return to Nigeria as soon as they are discharged upon the satisfied medical report.
But Justice Gideon Kurada, who was handling the case, on April 25, adjourned the trial of the IMN leader indefinitely.
The Free Zakzaky Committee in the statement signed by its chairman, Abdurrahman Abubakar Yola, said it was unfortunate that “the court once again shirked in its duties to be on the side of victims of extreme persecution by the government”.
“When it mattered most, the court ducked and failed to stand for truth and justice against tyranny and impunity.”
“The applicants are known to be very ill in detention, consequent on the brutal wounds unjustifiably inflicted on them by the state agents in the name of the Nigerian army, the resultant prolonged dehumanising detention in the custody of the Department of State Security (DSS) and the obvious poisoning of the Sheikh. As a result of all these physical and psychological stresses, the Sheikh suffered a series of mild strokes and is at the risk of further recurrences.
“Meanwhile, he lost one eye following the military attack and is at severe risk of losing sight completely in the other. He is now found to have more than 20 times the toxic levels of lead poison in his body! Similarly, the wife has been under excruciating pains with shrapnel deeply lodged in her body for all these years of inhuman conditions in detention. She now is able to ambulate only with the use of a wheelchair. Even today, both were unable to walk to the courtroom and had to wait outside while the case went on.
“In spite of all these, the court once again has allowed the government to kill these innocent people by instalments via unnecessary delays.”