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Nigeria Crackdown: Court Orders Sending Sheikh Zakzaky, Wife Back To Prison
By Staff, Agencies
At the resumed hearing of Nigerian Shia leader Sheikh Ibrahim al-Zakzaky’s trial, the Kaduna State High Court ordered Nigeria’s intelligence agency, the Department of State Security [DSS], to hand over custody of the cleric to the Nigerian Correctional Service.
According to social media accounts belonging to Sheikh Zakzaky’s office, the Kaduna High Court Judge granted the request made by the Nigerian government to send ailing Sheikh Zakzaky and his wife to Kaduna Central Prison.
Despite being sick, the court didn’t show any regard for their health condition. The hearing was adjourned to 6 February, 2020.
The decision followed a formal application to this effect by the prosecution which also gave reasons for the application.
Sheikh Zakzaky didn’t appear in court on Thursday where members of his defense team complained that the DSS has prevented them from seeing him since he returned from a medical trip to India in August.
They wondered how they can represent a client if they are rejected access to him.
Sheikh Zakzaky’s defense team tried to prevent his movement to the prison.
Sheikh Zakzaky and his wife have been in detention for close to four years despite a December 2016 Federal High court Abuja ruling ordering his release. Members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria say the Nigerian government has turned a deaf ear to all protests calling for the cleric’s release.
Sheikh Zakzaky supporters say authorities should speed up the proceedings due to his deteriorating health.
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