The Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) has reacted to claims by the Depart of State Services (DSS) that its leader, Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, chose to remain in their custody.
Naija News reports that the DSS had explained its continued detention of Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd.), Sheik Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and Omoyele Sowore.
The Nigeria secret police revealed that Dasuki, Sowore and El-Zakzaky requested to remain with the agency.
DSS spokesperson Peter Afunanya stated that the said individuals requested to remain in DSS facilities, adding that it was not in the character of the DSS to join issues with persons or groups.
“Since their stay, the Service has continued to extend the best courtesies to them. They are allowed access to people and use of other facilities like telephones, gymnasium, TV, newspapers and medical facilities.
“Among others, their families and trusted persons bring them food of their choices on a daily basis. There could not have been better treatments than these,” he said.
Reacting in a statement on Saturday, IMN spokesperson, Ibrahim Musa, said urged the DSS to allow its leader to address the public on whether or not he chose to remain in custody.
The Shiite group said: “The attention of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria has been drawn to a recent statement issued by the public relations officer of the DSS, Peter Afunanya, misdirecting the public into believing that the illegal detention of Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd) and Omoyele Sowore was based on their choices.
“In response to this act of mischief and deliberate blackmail, the movement hereby wishes to put the points straight as regards the detention of Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky. We outrightly refute this false and reckless accusation against the illegally detained leader of the Islamic Movement Sheikh Zakzaky.
“He was continuously held in illegal detention by the DSS, disallowed access to medical treatment and fed poison. This gave birth to a regime of peaceful protests within and outside Nigeria calling on Nigerian government to respect the court and release the revered leader. Several peaceful protesters were killed in their hundreds by police, army and DSS on different occasions on the streets of Nigeria.
“This act of disregard to law and order grossly affected the image of the Buhari regime which is tagged as tyrannical and undemocratic by a lot of concerned individuals, groups and governments.
“In trying to justify the continued illegal detention of the Sheikh, the government concocted cropped up charges and instituted a new case against Sheikh Zakzaky (H) in a Kaduna High court. The charges were the same made against Islamic movement members out of which almost about a hundred were earlier discharged and acquitted by the Kaduna High Court.
“The revered Sheikh was then transferred from Abuja DSS detention facility to Kaduna DSS detention facility using it as an alibi for the continued illegal detention.
“Due to the Sheikh’s deteriorating health condition as confirmed by government doctors, the Kaduna High Court.”
The group urged the DSS to respect and obey court orders rather than attempt to justify the illegal detention.
IMN added that the level of disregard to law and order by the DSS is totally alien to their rules of engagement and to the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.