El-Zakzaky, wife detained after botched medical trip to India

Posted by News Express | 16 August 2019 | 1,677 times

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•Sheikh El-Zakzaky and wife Zeenat at Abuja airport before their trip

Leader of the proscribed Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, and his wife, Zeenat, have been taken into custody by security agents upon their arrival in Nigeria early this afternoon of Friday, August 16, 2019.

They were whisked away by the security agents at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja, according to Channels TV, quoting IMN spokesman, Ibrahim Musa.

El-Zakzaky and wife arrived Nigeria aboard an Ethiopian Airlines by 12noon, four days after they travelled to the Asian country for treatment.

They left Nigeria on Monday for India following a ruling of the Kaduna State High Court which granted them permission to be treated in the country. On their arrival at the hospital where treatment was expected to commence, the trip turned controversial.

IMN accused the Nigerian government of treating their leader like a criminal and denying him access to the doctor with whom they had an arrangement. They also claimed that El-Zakzaky was denied free movement and was monitored by heavy security surveillance in India.

Treatment Turned Controversy

El-Zakzaky had also narrated his ordeal in the foreign country, saying the condition in India was worse than that of Nigeria.

“We saw that we were practically brought to another detention facility which is even stricter than the one we were in back in Nigeria. They came here with police armed with guns and a lot of staff from the Nigerian embassy. And we also noticed we were brought into another detention that we only came based on trust.

“Even in Nigeria, they agreed where we were detained that we would be treated only by the doctors we choose and are comfortable with allowing to treat us. But here we understand that the doctors that advised us to come here are blocked from having any say in our case,” the IMN leader had said.

The Nigerian Government, in its response, denied the allegations by the IMN and its leader.

Instead, the government accused the Shiite leader of becoming unruly at the hospital in New Delhi and apologised to the Indian authorities.

It insisted that the allegations were “foul cry”, saying claims that El-Zakzaky was held in circumstances worse than he was in Nigeria should be disregarded.

The government said the IMN leader was allowed to embark on the trip with state officials in line with the court order and his choice to be accompanied by his aides and personal doctors were not opposed.

It added that the IMN leader chose the hospital where he was admitted in India, but he began to display “ulterior motives” against laid down procedures.

Return After Stalemate

After the exchange of blames from both sides, spokesperson for the IMN, Ibrahim Musa, told Channels Television that the controversy El-Zakzaky’s treatment in India had been resolved.

Barely a day after the interview, Musa said the IMN leader and his wife have embarked on a trip back to Nigeria.

He explained that the decision was as a result of lack of a breakthrough in the impasse that ensued regarding El-Zakzaky’s treatment in India.

“It is clear to us that the Nigerian government interference and the scuttling of the whole process rather than supervision as ordered by the court are the direct cause of the impasse,” he said.

El-Zakzaky and his wife are facing an eight-count of culpable homicide, unlawful assembly, disturbance of public peace at the Kaduna State High Court.

The charges were filed against them by the Kaduna State Government and the duo were first arraigned in May 2018.

Following their return to the country from India, it is unclear what the next line of action would be.

•Based on reports by Channels TV.

Source: News Express

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