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Human Rights Commission Blames Adjourning Sheikh Zakzaky’s Trial

A Kaduna State High Court has again adjourned the trial of the top Shia cleric Sheikh Ibrahim al-Zakzaky and his wife until April 23-24.

This is while the health conditions of the senior cleric and his wife, Zeenah, are deteriorating and they need immediate medical care, which has been denied by the Kaduna prison authorities.

According to the Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) website, One of the counsel for Sheikh Zakzaky and his wife, Marshal Abubakar told the court that in the previous session, the judge had ordered the prison authorities to allow the Sheikh’s Doctors to treat him and his wife, but The prison authorities refused to do so despite being issued a warrant previously by the court.

He urged the court to remand the application for their doctors to treat them. He said that currently Mallama Zeenat was bleeding from her nose and mouth. He said this proves that the defendants are in a serious condition. He said that they needed urgent help from their doctors.

Masoud Shajareh, Head of the IHRC, said that many court sessions have been held on this case over the past four years, most of which, like Monday’s session, have aimed to waste time and prolong the detention of the two.

Shajareh underlined the need for human rights and political activists to put more pressure on the Nigerian government to release the two.

Members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) have expressed concern over the constant adjournments of the alleged homicide case against Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and his wife, as the trial has again, been adjourned.

President of IMN Media Forum, Ibrahim Musa, who reacted to the decision of the Kaduna High Court to adjourn the case till April 23 and 24, 2020 in an interview with The Guardian said, “We are concerned about the way the court is adjourning the case, it is as if it will not end and Sheikh El-Zakzaky will perpetually be kept in custody.

“This trial, which was started on 15/05/2018 has been adjourned a dozen times before this particular one and we are wondering why the delay and when it will end”, The Guardian Nigeria News reported.

Sheikh Zakzaky, who is in his mid-sixties, lost the sight of his left eye in a 2015 raid by security forces, that left more than 300 of his followers and three of his sons dead. His wife also sustained serious injuries during the raid.

He has been kept in custody along with his wife and a large number of his followers ever since.

On December 5, 2019, Nigerian authorities transferred the top Shia cleric, who is the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), and his wife to a dilapidated prison, where many detainees have so far died due to lack of medical attention.

A High Court ordered the Department of State Services earlier in the day to transfer the two to the Correctional Center in Kaduna state, northwest of the country.

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