Security has been beefed up in Kaduna State ahead of the court sitting for the bail application Islamic Movement in Nigeria leader Ibrahim El-Zakzaky at the Kaduna State High Court
Justice Darius Khobo will rule on the application filed by the Shiites’ leader seeking permission to travel abroad for medical treatment.
The Prosecutor-General of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Mohammed Montazeri, last Friday urged the Nigerian government to allow El-Zakzaky come to Iran for medical treatment.
The bail hearing is barely three days after a Federal High Court in Abuja granted the federal government the power to proscribe the group.
A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and El-Zakzaky’s lawyer, Femi Falana, condemned the government’s action, describing it as illegal.
But the proscription order is being panned by critics of the government.
“The proscription of the IMN because of its protests against the disobedience of court orders by the President Muhammadu Buhari regime is immoral and illegal in every material particular,” Falana said.
However, the government on Sunday noted that it is only “fighting lawlessness and criminality and not pursuing a policy of discrimination against any group.”
It said it only wanted to “discourage wanton violence, murder and willful destruction of public and private property.”
The government said the Shiites protests have been taken over by “extremists” who didn’t believe in peaceful protests.
The Shiites have been protesting in Abuja calling for the release of their leader el-Zakzaky who has been in detention since 2015 despite a court order to release him.
The protests have often turned violent but became more bloody recently. On Monday, Nigerian police met the protests with gunfire and tear gas. A journalist and a senior police officer died during the clash.
The group spokesman also said that at least 20 members were killed in the process too.