- The Kaduna state government has filed a fresh eight-count charge against El-Zakzaky
- Recall that was arrested in December 2015 following a clash between his followers and some soldiers
- He has since been in custody of the DSS
The Kaduna state government has filed a fresh charge against Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) in a high court in the state.
Recall that El-Zakzaky was arrested in December 2015 after his followers and some soldiers clashed in Zaria, Kaduna state.
Over 300 people were said to have been killed as a result of the clash.
Following his arrest, the Kaduna government charged him with criminal conspiracy.
The IMN leader has been in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS) since his arrest despite court orders for his release.
His followers have held a series of protests over his continued detention of El-Zakzaky.
However, in a new twist, the Cable reports that in a suit dated April 18, El-Zakzaky and three other leaders of IMN were slammed an eight-count charge.
NAIJ.com gathered that the suit also listed 18 persons as witnesses to testify against the defendants in court.
The charge read in part: “That you, Mallam Ibrahim Al-Zakzaky, Mallama Zeenah Ibrahim, Yakub Yahaya Katsina and Sanusi Abdulkadir being leaders of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria on or about the 12th of December at Zaria agreed with other members of the sect to do an illegal act, to with vehicle armed with dangerous weapons such as pistols guns, dane guns, cutlasses, knives, catapults, axes, clubs and sticks blocked Sokoto road, Sabon Gari, Zaria, and other major roads within the environs and prevented the convoy of the chief of army staff and the general public from gaining access to the roads and same act was done in pursuance of the said agreement and you thereby commit an offence punishable under section 59 of the penal code of law of Kaduna state 2017.”
It further listed the exhibits found in the possession of Shi’ites during the clash to include 40 pieces of catapults, 17 pieces of sticks, 70 pieces of knives, one piece of a locally-made pistol, 21 pieces of arrows, 12 pieces of bows.
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NAIJ.com previously reported that protesters were forcefully dispersed by the police in Abuja and one person reportedly killed after members of the IMN clashed with the police.
A witness reportedly disclosed that the deceased was an IMN member.
“He was shot dead while trying to gain access to the Unity Fountain alongside members of the sect,” the witness was quoted to have said.
The incident which occurred at the Unity Fountain, beside Transcorp hotel, in Abuja, according to Premium Times saw police firing tear gas on the protesters who are believed to be Shiites demanding the release of their leader, El-Zakzaky.
Southern Kaduna killings: part 1 - on NAIJ.com TV