Members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) under the auspices of Resource Forum of IMN, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to unconditionally release its leader Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky and his wife, Zeenah.
Speaking at a press conference on Saturday, Chairman, Resource Forum of IMN, Prof. Abdullahi Danladi, asked Buhari to obey the court ruling that granted the duo bail four years ago.
He explained that the federal high court had ruled that the continued detention of the duo violates their rights under Section 35 (1) of the Nigerian Constitution and the provisions of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights.
Danladi said, he (Justice Gabriel Kolawole) ordered the release of the ailing Sheikh and his wife within 45 days of the judgement and that both must be provided with suitable accommodation and security.
He stressed, “Delivering the judgment, the Presiding Judge, Justice Gabriel Kolawole held that the continued detention of El-Zakzaky and his wife by state instrumentality was an arbitrary act.”
He lamented that no extant law within the country’s statutory legal frameworks and external ones subscribed to by the state had allowed anybody to be held against his or her wishes.
The professor said that the defense of the respondents was not tenable in law, adding that the state had not justified why the applicant and his wife were held under protective custody as it claimed then.
He reiterated, “The judge had warned the government in that judgement that holding the Sheikh for so long amounted to great danger, insisting that if the applicant dies in custody, which I do not pray for, it could result in many needless deaths.”
According to Danladi, President Buhari has stubbornly kept deaf ears to that and contemptuously continued to detain them, pointing out that instead of releasing them, Buhari opted to file bogus charges against the Sheikh and his wife through Kaduna state government.
The forum said that failure to obey court orders by the government is an open invitation to anarchy as observed by a Professor of law, adding that this is at variance with the democratic principles it claims to be running.
The forum observed that before arriving at any decision to release any individual or grant him bail, the courts must have first reviewed the facts presented by all parties and listened to arguments from both the government and such citizens. “It is therefore totally unacceptable for a government to choose the judgements it would follow and those it will ignore,” the forum explained.