5th December, 2019
A Kaduna State High Court has ordered that the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and his wife be transferred from the custody of the Department of State Service, DSS, to a Correctional Centre in the state.
The trial judge, Justice Gideon Kudafa in his ruling on Thursday said the decision was taken to enable their lawyers and doctors to have easy access to them.
He, therefore, adjourned the case to February the 6th for the commencement of trial.
The IMN leader is facing trial over allegations of culpable homicide, unlawful assembly, and disruption of the public peace, among other charges.
The trial judge, Justice Gideon Kudafa had on March the 26th adjourned the case indefinitely following his appointment as a member of the Election Petition Tribunal in Yobe State.
El-Zakzaky and his wife were not in court during the last proceedings, although their counsel, Femi Falana, claimed that their absence was due to their deteriorated health conditions.
He and his wife (Zeenat) were denied bail by the presiding judge during the last sitting on January 22, 2018.
In the application for bail filed by El Zakzaky’s lawyer, Femi Falana, on his behalf at the last sitting, the legal practitioner prayed the court to give a mandatory order for his client and his wife to be flown abroad.
Falana, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, informed the court that this was to enable them to receive proper medical attention since the Federal Government has glaringly failed to cure them of the injuries they sustained during the alleged army’s onslaught on their residence in December 2015.
The judge in his ruling, however, ordered that El Zakzaky should be allowed by the government to bring doctors of his choice to examine him in the presence of doctors from the government before the date of the next sitting.
With the absence of the trial judge, Counsel to the IMN leader, Mr. Falana, filed a fresh application at another court of equal jurisdiction on July the 18th asking it to grant his clients leave to seek medical attention abroad and thereafter return for the continuation of their trial.
Consequently, on August the 5th, the presiding judge, Justice Darius Khobo ordered that the IMN leader and his wife be accompanied abroad by officials of the Kaduna State government.
The presiding judge ruled that El-Zakzaky and his wife should proceed to India for medical treatment, after which they will return to Nigeria to face their trial.