A division of the Federal High Court in Abuja on Friday has ordered the immediate release of the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, (IMN), Ibrahim El-Zakzaky who is been detained against his will.
El-ZakyZaky alongside his wife and some members of the Shiite group were arrested on December 14, 2015, after a clash between the Army and the group in Kaduna State, which reports said led to the death of about 347 members of the movement.
In his application tendered by his lawyer, Mr Femi Falana, the Shiite leader contested his continuous detention without being charged to court, he also prayed to the court to declare it as a violation to his fundamental rights and unlawful
Justice Gabriel Kolawole, in his judgement rejected the submission of the counsel to the State Security Service, Tijjani Gazali, that Mr. El-Zakzaky was kept in protective custody of the SSS, adding that the decision to hold him and his wife for their safety is against the law.w.
“I have not been shown any incident report or any complaint lodged by residents around the neighbourhood that the applicant has become a nuisance to his neigbourhood,” said the judge.
While making reference to the death of former leader of the Boko Haram leader, Mohammed Yusuf, who died in custody, Justice Kolawole said holding the Islamic cleric for a long time amount to a great danger.
“If the applicant dies in custody which I do not pray for, it could result in many needless deaths,” he said.
Mr. Kolawole however, ordered the Federal Government to within the next 45 days release the applicant and his family to the police, who shall within 24 hours take them, guarded by escort, to a safe place.
He added that the SSS will pay a fine of N25 million each to Mr. El-Zakzaky and his wife, making a total of N50 million.