(Sola Ojo, KADUNA)
Members of Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), the largest Shi’ite organisation in the country, have rejected the report of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry (JCI) into a bloody clash in December 2015 between sect members and the Nigerian Army in Zaria, accusing it bias.
The JCI had in its report recently submitted to Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, indicted both the members of the Shi’ites and Nigerian Army for the loss of lives and property in was was judged to be an avoidable clash.
Addressing newsmen in Kaduna yesterday, Chairman of the Free Zakzaky Campaign Committee, Abdulrahaman Abubakar Yola, said the position of the group on the report remained that some of the members of the inquiry were hitherto against the activities of IMN, hence the possibility of bias in their contributions.
Yola said: “The Kaduna State government deliberately appointed persons that have consistently maintained that IMN should be banned and it’s schools and facilities closed down. The Kaduna State government even before setting up the JCI had blamed the IMN for instigating the events that led to the massacre of its members.
“The Judicial Commission of Inquiry made sure that our leader did not get a hearing. Our Legal Team led by Femi Falana and Festus Okoye made spirited attempts to secure access to him to no avail. The Judicial Commission also decided not to order the security agencies to produce him because they never wanted him to testify. It is based on this that the Government and the Military and other security agencies found it convenient to lie against him in the Commission,” he added.
Yola further that neither El-zakzaky nor any member of the sect had ever renounced his citizenship of Nigeria, hence accusations of acting as a parallel government with total disdain for the formal structures of the Nigerian government as alleged by the President Buhari was unfounded.
He concluded that if the federal and Kaduna State governments were sincere in their claim that they will do justice to the tragedy of 12-14 December 2015, they should as matter of urgency release the religious leader and others with him who have been in the custody of Department of State Security Service (DSS) for the past eight months.