The Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN ) otherwise called the Shiite has sent a string worded petition to the United Nations European Union, Amnesty International, National Human Rights Commission, Canada, Norway and Switzerland over the refusal of Nigerian government to release the travelling documents of their leader Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, and his wife, Zenaat.
In the petition made available to our Reporter on Saturday, the group said the continued withholding of the documents has made it impossible for their leader and wife to travel abroad for medical treatment.
According to it, despite the judgment of a Kaduna State High Court which discharged and acquitted them, the couple has been denied access to travel, even as it expressed concern that the health of El-Zakzaky, and his wife, Zenaat have continued to deteriorating tremendously.
Answering questions from reporters, the spokesperson for IMN, Abdullahi Muhammad, said this is a petition the United Nations, European Union, Amnesty International, National Human Rights Commission, Canada, Norway and Switzerland cannot afford to take serious.
The petition was dated August 2021. In it the group asked for the immediate release of the document in the interest of justice.
According to petition, “We write to inform you that despite the July 28 ruling of the Kaduna State High Court, which, apart from discharging and acquitting Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and his wife, Malama Zeenat, serves yet as another opportunity for them to travel for the long awaited, and even long overdue, medical treatment, government has decided to defy the judgment and frustrate the overseas trip as it continues to hinder the couple from retrieving their travel documents.
“Having had the documents confiscated during their aborted medical trip to India, the couple remains stranded. But, due to the fact that the medical leave granted by the Kaduna State High Court didn’t require security agents to sequester any travel documents, the seizure was beyond the bounds of legality, a pure transgression.
“It is glaringly obvious that the government is only bending the laws of the land in its pursuit of an unjust cause. The couple’s medical reports, submitted to the court in 2019 through their counsel, Femi Falana (SAN), brought about its acquiescence in the medical leave to the Asian subcontinent.’’
IMN members also revealed that the court had acceded that the couple’s deteriorating health condition of the couple did not merely require qualified medical personnel for an effective examination, but also a medical facility with up-to-date equipment.
According to the report, travelling abroad for medical treatment is a top priority to the couple, stressing that the Sheikh had emphasised it during a meeting with the group on July 31.
“To spend five years and seven months in detention with numerous pieces of shrapnel in the body, releasing deadly poison into the blood, is no child’s play’’, it lamented.
Uche Nwosu is a two time Shell Petroleum PLC award winner in the year 2000;
He won the Shell Award on Investigative Journalism and Environmental Cleanliness.