By Abdulmumin Giwa
In a statement made available to pressmen on Friday the son of the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Muhammad Ibraheem has protested the negligence of the Nigerian government towards his father’s deteriorating sight condition after being shot in the eye by the Nigeria Army during the December 2015 Zaria pogrom.
He complained that his father, Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky is being denied the treatment he deserves to save the remaining eye that is slowly becoming blind.
“As his sight continues to fail day by day the DSS continues to refuse, under the guise of bureaucratic excuses, our request that a known qualified doctor be allowed to attend to him” he stated.
He described the DSS, as being most careless about his father’s health situation by denying him access to other experts’ opinions on the one eye that was single-handedly declared non-functional by the doctor they appointed to treat him.
Muhammad condemned the hypocrisy of the DSS saying “In the eight months since the ‘Nigerian Army’ killed and secretly buried over a thousand people including my three brothers, my aunt and a lot of the people I hold most dear, while also shooting my mother 7 times and depriving my father of an eye as well as crippling his arm and leg, the DSS which claims to be “protecting him” has also denied him access to his doctors, legal counsel, and has only allowed us to visit only when it suited them. In the past eight months I’ve driven to Abuja, several times only to be turned back.”
He described as embarrassing and act of cowardice by the DSS to claim that they spent N5m treating his father when it is his father that fuels even the generator in the place he is being incarcerated.
“Then there is the fact that even though my father is currently incarcerated, it is he who pays for his expenses down to the fuel for the generator in the place where he is being held, not to mention the extortionist behavior of some of the agents in charge of handling my parents” he said.
He added’ “Then there is his health, specifically the health of his last remaining eye, which is already half blind. The attending single doctor whose name and qualification I do not know, nor has the DSS informed me, has already arbitrarily and single handedly proscribed one of his eyes as lost for good, without recourse to a second opinion.”
“If the DSS that is a Government organization of fundamental importance, is proudly insulting me by claiming to be spending five million Naira for my father, Ibraheem Zakzaky has a son who is alive and willing to spend multiples of that amount (and I can afford it), for his Father. But I cannot, because the opportunity to do such things for my father is blocked by the ‘Dutifully Protective Custodians.’ DPC. (Death Prospecting Cooperation).”
He challenged the DSS on their claims of placing his father under protective custody saying, ”If they really are just protecting my father as their lawyer has claimed, then I would want to ask them the following unanswered questions; firstly: What form of a threat is the visit of Family Members? What form of a threat is the visit of doctors? What threat does my father’s access to his lawyers constitute? Considering the impending and dangerous situation threatening to turn him blind, why are no doctors allowed? Why do they assault us with SLRs when all we want is to be able to attend to our flesh and blood? And why should I continue to play the silently grateful son of the guest who is actually more like a hostage? As my fingers shiver lest harm come to my parents for speaking the truth I would finally ask you what I have been asking myself, Can I entrust the truth to my tongue?”
Still on the claim that his father is being kept in protective custody, Muhammad said, “Ever since the statement was made I have made several attempts to type a response each time I begin to type my fingers shake from excess of wrath, anger, despair and the all too fresh realization of the truly unbelievable depths of insincerity, hypocrisy and cruelty. I always think and question the humanity of the cabal that masterminded the Zaria Massacre. How can it be rationally explained that we share the same taxonomy as this brutal breed of beasts wearing the uniform of the Nigerian army who executed this inhuman massacre?”
Explaining his current state and situation even as he remained focused on his father’s principles he said, “It is true that I am weak and powerless in the face of such unfathomable levels of evil madness, reckless hatred, extreme prejudice and limitless inhumanity. The only thing I can do now is to complain, to protest, and protest by any means available. As I gradually lose all my senses due to worry, I find myself increasingly losing all hope of recourse to reason and feel ever increasingly compelled towards necessity. If violence and irrationalism is a strength, I don’t have it, I still regret killing that rat. I am incapable of breaking my own innocence. I cannot kill without remorse. I was born of a father who could never ever condone the path of wrath, even at the cost of his sight.”
Finally Muhammad called on people of conscience to join in saving his father from total blindness, “I want to call all those who believe in the inalienable right of all human beings to fairness, justice and dignity, to help by joining me in a redoubled effort. We must protest this seemingly never ending series of outrages, we must make our voices heard. We must act before it is too late, we must demonstrate wherever we are able. I for one will walk alone on my two feet from my father’s house in Zaria to Abuja if I have to, I will sit in front of any office for as long as it takes, I will stop eating and drinking for as long as it takes.”
“As God is my witness I swear that having survived the unthinkable, my father is currently being wearied down into a blind man, he is being slowly crippled, destroyed. Compliments of the DSS and co. enough is enough. Post the dammed pictures make all the lies but do not insult us, let us send doctors, let us save my father’s eye” he said.