Presidential Cabal, Fighting A Lost Battle
By Abdulmumin Giwa
Sequel to the Zaria massacre where over one thousand members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) were brutally killed by the Nigerian government, peaceful means of seeking redress were initiated by the IMN alongside massive calls for justice widely spread across the globe.
With the perpetrators planning to sweep everything under the carpet and the Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari pretending as if nothing of serious consequences had happened while the Kaduna state Governor Nasir El-Rufai played the role of destroying physical evidences and assisting the Army to hide the heinous crime against humanity, the IMN resorted to the court of law.
In this regard the IMN contacted most reliable human rights lawyers that might be available in Nigeria who have a reputation to protect as against the hungry legal practitioners that might be more inclined to wealth acquisition.
Femi Falana SAN was seriously touched with the level of irresponsibility displayed by the Nigerian Army carrying heavy weapons against unarmed women and children and killing them like ants for which he condemned the act publicly.
The legal team was set up with Barristers Festus Okoye and Maxwell Kyon assisting the SAN and cases for the enforcement of the fundamental human rights of the IMN leader Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky and his wife Malam Zeenat Ibrahim were filed before the Federal High Court in Abuja.
Since the unfortunate incident that led to the killing, torture, burning alive and molestation of women of the IMN by the ‘gallant’ Nigerian Army from 12th to 14th of December 2015 in Zaria, the presidency and its security cabal have decided to act with impunity in total disregard to the constitutional provisions by keeping the revered leader of the IMN in illegal custody without any charges.
The IMN leader, His Eminence Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky was kept incommunicado by the duo while the Nigerian public is deceived and entertained with unsubstantiated lies perpetrated by those who committed the crime against humanity in Zaria.
To add salt to injury, the IMN leader was not and is still not charged to court for committing any crime whatsoever but is kept in detention simply to appease the whims and caprices of the Presidency even as the constitution is violated.
On uncountable occasions, the IMN legal team was denied access to its client even as the Kangaroo Judicial Commission of Inquiry (JCI) claimed to be waiting to hear the side of the story of the IMN legal team proving that the JCI was not set up for fairness or justice but for indictment and malice.
The JCI made all efforts to deceive the legal team of the IMN to submit a memo on behalf of the IMN claiming that if it does the JCI will facilitate its meeting with the Sheikh in detention. To this the legal team insisted that they get briefed by their client first.
The JCI was only interested in receiving a memo from the IMN to justify its credibility and not because it was interested in any inquiry or being fair to the IMN. As a result of this the JCI lawyers were allowed access to the leader of the IMN in detention where they lied to him that they were independent lawyers and were there for his interest. The only thing to be understood here is that they were there with the intention of deceiving him not to accept other legal practitioners that might come his way.
It was well after this hypocrisy that the legal team of the IMN was allowed access to the IMN leader who declared that the team stays away from the JCI and go to proper court of law to seek redress. All these machinations were plotted by the presidential security cabal working hand-in-hand with the Kaduna state government.
As the IMN takes its case to court, the presidency felt most uncomfortable most especially with the strength of the IMN legal team leader Femi Falana SAN, a renowned human rights activist and incorruptible comrade.
The presidential security cabal in the DSS went on to pressurize the SAN to stay away from the case and even painted the IMN and its leader in bad light but could not convince him to stay away from the case as he became an impediment to their mischievous plots against the IMN.
They even wrote a letter threatening him for standing for the IMN and the letter was made public. He responded and addressed the matter within the ambit of the law. They used other means as well to try to prevail over him to ensure that he let go of the case but he remained undaunted.
The cases were instituted, two in Abuja and one in Kaduna with the Inspector General of Police, DSS and Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) as respondents in that of the one filed in Abuja. In a lay man’s language, all the case was all about was the release of the IMN leader and his wife from illegal detention by the presidential cabal in the DSS and the payments of general damages as a result.
The presidency is very uncomfortable with this because they tyrannically want to keep the IMN leader in detention by all means and it was the duty of the DSS cabal to make sure he remains detained.
The DSS cabal as in their mischief allowed access to the leader of the Movement by his son and in-laws and other close relations where they snapped pictures of the leader placing some food items and drinks in their front. These pictures were presented in court as evidence that they were keeping the IMN leader in detention with his own consent and that they were treating him well and have even spent five million naira on him. This is a very big insult on the personality of the IMN leader.
But they need to prove these before the court when the hearing comes and so they brought in some lawyers from nowhere to claim they are part of the legal team of the IMN.
Meanwhile the son of the revered leader of the IMN had written an open letter that circulated the media and shook the horizon. In it he stated the inhumanity being meted on his father whose health was fast deteriorating. He also exposed the many lies of the DSS presidential cabal. Everything the leader needed was supplied not by the DSS including the fueling of the generator of the place they are keeping him he exposed them. This also was very embarrassing to the DSS presidential cabal most especially as the eyes of the world are on the matter and they have to protect the image of their leader in the presidency.
Before this, the lawyers started surfacing from nowhere and acting contrary to the schedules of the IMN legal team. They were not there when the case was instituted, they were not there when the case passed its initial stages to the level of hearing, they were not there when the agreement with the legal team was signed and were also not there when the team was struggling on the IMN position with the JCI.
At a certain point, the legal intruders even claimed that they have met with the IMN leader and he instructed that the IMN should remove the DSS from the list of respondents in the case before the court. One would easily deduce who they are working for by this demand. They gave very funny and stupid reasons for that saying that he is being kept well and catered for, he is kept in a big house and driven in a jeep; another grave insult on the personality of the IMN leader.
These legal intruders also mobilized a letter to be written to the DSS appreciating the good way it is looking after the leader of the Movement. They produced it in the name of the IMN counsel and gave it to the DSS. One would wonder what the letter is for, the answer is not farfetched. The DSS simply needs evidence before the court to prove that they were keeping the IMN leader with his consent in protective custody since initially it was a lie they told the court and now they have mischievously found a letter to present as evidence.
They were able to get the letter through lies and mischief saying that if the letter is written and appreciation is shown then the IMN leader would be released by the DSS as if they were the ones keeping him at their own will and not the president.
They didn’t stop there, they went ahead to introduce the lawyers to the court case using the vacation court with the intention of causing chaos, extending the period of the case in the court, instituting an argument as to the right counsel representing the IMN leader thereby creating a diversion in the case and if possible affecting the hearing of the case coming up in September.
As the judges were on vacation and there was a vacation judge, they went round to submit an application in the case which was naturally dismissed by the vacation judge because it lacked merit and was not properly done and all the respondents were not served as well. One would wonder how a smart and professional lawyer would serve a court with an application without serving the respondents in the case. The intention here is also vividly clear that the application was not meant for the case to be heard but for some clandestine reasons that was why they didn’t bother to follow the due process of filing it.
In addition to that, the media was sponsored to give wide but distorted coverage of the whole operation giving the impression that the court had dismissed the case filed before it.
With all these intrusions persisting, the IMN had no choice but to do a disclaimer to tell the world who the real legal team of the IMN are in order to clear the air of any suspicions and deceit.
We cannot tell what the next plan of the DSS presidential cabal will be in trying to see that they are not issued with a court order to immediately and unconditionally release the IMN leader and pay general damages come September.
We know how they disregard court orders in Nigeria and are aware that even if this order is given they will certainly not act different from the way they have always acted most especially when the president and his foreign masters have interest in the case. But still it deals a deadly blow on them when it comes to claiming democracy, human rights and law and order.
Whatever the case, the issue remains that they cannot keep the Sheikh forever as even they themselves cannot live forever. Whatever it is that they would do to deceive the world will never change what history will carry about them to the end of time. And in the end the leader of the IMN His Eminence Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky will be released and freed and they will be left in shame.
They continue plot and Allah plots, but Allah is the best of plotters and so shall all their efforts continue to be in vein as they fight a lost battle.