By Abdulmumin Giwa
Members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, IMN have taken to the streets once again in a massive peaceful protest calling for immediate and unconditional release of the leader of the Movement Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky.
The leader of the Movement along with his wife Malama Zeenat Ibraheem and hundreds of other members have been in illegal custody where they are being kept in different detention facilities across the country since the 12th to 14th December attack by the Army.
The protest which started from Ahmadu Bello Way in Kaduna metropolis to Tudun Wada area witnessed men, women and children in their thousands carrying posters of Sheikh Zakzaky and raising colorful flags with inscriptions of “Free Zakzaky” on them.
In a brief rally at the end of the protest march, Malam Aliyu Tirmizi who led the protest called on the government to unconditionally release the leader of the Movement as well as other members in detention.
He also called on the government to rebuild all the properties of the IMN it demolished during the pogrom that led to the killing of over 1000 members of the Movement.
On the issue of the mass grave which the state government confessed burying 347 members of the movement at night, Malam Tirmizi called on the government to exhume the mass grave and hand over the corpses for befitting burials.
He reiterated that the IMN shall continue to remain peaceful and violence-free in seeking for the enforcement of the fundamental rights of its members in illegal and unjustifiable detention across the country.
Malam Tirmizi stated that the IMN shall continue to stage protest marches and rallies indefinitely until the call for the release of its members get to the ears of the concerned authorities.
Meanwhile, the IMN has debunked rumors that it is planning to resort to kidnapping military officers to use them as ransom for the release of its leader. It condemned this accusation describing it as a mischievous insinuation.
The IMN however reiterated its position that it shall continue to seek for justice through peaceful means as evident in the steps it had taken in the last five months since the pogrom that include filing cases before the ICC in Hague and the Federal High Courts in Nigeria.