Adelani Adepegba, Abuja
A pro-democracy group, Concerned Nigerians, has stated that the Shiite leader, Ibrahym El-zakzaky is still in the custody of the Department of State Services contrary to claims by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed.
The group also expressed its readiness to accommodate El-zakzaky and his wife adding that other members of his movement were also ready to support their re-integration into the society.
Mohammed had in an interview on Channels TV said the cleric and his wife were being kept in a house built for them by the Federal Government.
But the group in a statement on Sunday dismissed the minister’s claims as false, stressing that the Shiite leader “is still in detention.”
The statement co-signed by the Concerned Nigerians’ convener, Deji Adeyanju and Secretary, John Danfulani, described the minister’s assertion as an insult to the collective sensibility of Nigerians, noting that the sect leader’s family members and lawyers did not have access to him.
It said, “How can the Minister of Information say the Sheik and his wife are living in a house built by this government and no member of his immediate family, his lawyers or IMN members have been allowed to visit him in that house?
“Information available to us suggests that Sheik Zakzaky and his wife are still in the DSS custody and have remained there ever since their arrest in December 2015; It is not true that no Nigerian is willing to be a neighbour to Sheik Zakzaky or accept him.”
The group stated that since December last year when over 1,000 Shiite members were killed, no one had been prosecuted for the killings.
It said it was willing to accommodate Zakzaky and his wife, adding that other members of his movement were also ready to support their re-integration into the society.
“This government must remember that the world is watching and that it has the worst human rights violation record in the history of our country,” it said.
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