The Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) has petitioned some international and local organisations, including some countries, over the refusal of the Federal Government to release the international passports of its leader, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and his wife, Zeenat, to travel abroad for medical attention.
The copies of the acknowledged petitions, which were signed by the Secretary, Academic Forum of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (AFIMN), Abdullahi Muhammad Musa, were made available to the media on Friday in Abuja.
The petitions were addressed to the United Nations (UN) Resident Coordinator; Head of European Union (EU) Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS; Director, Amnesty International, Nigeria; Canadian High Commissioner; the Ambassador of Norway; Ambassador of Switzerland and the Executive Secretary, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).
The group, in the letter titled: “Petition against the Federal Government for Confiscating International Passports of Sheikh Zakzaky and His Wife,” expressed concern that despite the Kaduna court judgment which exonerated their leader of all the charges preferred against him, the Nigerian government has refused to release the couple’s travel documents to access a healthcare abroad due to their worsening health conditions.
“We write to inform you that despite the 28 July 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 judgement and frustrate the overseas trip as it continues to hinder the couple from retrieving their travel documents.
“Having had the documents confiscated during the aborted medical trip to India, now, in the wake of their being exculpated by the court, the couple remain 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 the government is only bending the laws of the land in its pursuit of an unjust cause,” IMN said.
According to the group, the couple’s medical reports, submitted to the court in the year 2019 through their counsel, Femi Falana, SAN, brought about its acquiescence in the medical leave to the Asian subcontinent.
“The court had acceded that the couple’s deteriorating health condition didn’t merely require qualified medical personnel for an effective examination, but also a medical facility with up-to-date equipment.
“Travelling abroad for medical treatment is such a top priority to the couple, and the Sheikh emphasised it the more during our meeting with him on the 31st of July.
“To expend five  years seven  months in detention with numerous pieces of bullet shrapnel in the body, releasing deadly poison into the blood, is no child’s play.
“Unfortunately, they, ever since their discharge and acquittal, have not been able to travel outside the country for the much-needed treatment; for, their traveling documents are still with the authority.
“We solicit your kind intervention in the release of the documents as the couple are seriously suffering from many injuries and resultant multiple life-threatening health challenges,” it concluded./SHARE THIS