HAS Nigeria, since its return to democracy, witnessed a gory violation of human rights as heartbreaking as in the case of Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky, leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria? The brutal manner with which the ailing Sheikh and his wife are continually being oppressed is inconceivable.
Away from freedom, away from their family and away from justice: they have spent 2000 days in detention. This is, again, in flagrant violation of the order of a competent court of law to effect their release since December 2016.
The couple, arrested since December 2015, have been in the custody of Department of State Services (DSS) and held incommunicado before being moved to Kaduna correctional facility despite their deteriorating health condition that needs urgent medical assistance.
The Sheikh is still suffering from various life-threatening health conditions. The story is no different for his wife Zeenah Ibraheem, who is now reportedly confined to wheelchair as she can no longer walk on her feet.
It is obvious that the continued detention of Sheikh Zakzaky and his wife is “illegal” and by far “unconstitutional”. There is no justification, whatsoever, for their detention. It is a clear violation of their rights as enshrined in the constitution of Nigeria; the right to life, right to personal liberty, right to dignity of human person and so on.
Whether the government will do the needful- to at least allow the ailing Sheikh and his wife proper access to medical care remains to be seen but one thing is glaringly certain: Sheikh Zakzaky and his wife are being oppressed. They are peace loving individuals; and therefore seeking their freedom is a moral duty to all and sundry.
- Najeeb Maigatari,
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