The Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) on Monday said its leader, Ibraheem Zakzaky, and wife, Zeenatuddeen, currently in the custody of the Department of State Security, DSS, in Abuja, were suffering life-threatening injuries.
The Chairman of the Resource Forum of the sect, Abdullahi Danladi, raised the alarm while addressing journalists in Kaduna.
Mr. Danladi, a professor, said apart from the life-threatening gunshot injuries sustained by Mr. Zakzaky, his blood pressure was almost spiraling out of control and might result in death if not urgently attended to.
“There is also a complicated wound on his stomach which he sustained during his 1987 incarceration in Kirikiri,” Mr. Danladi said.
The Professor of Textile Technology at the Ahmadu Bello University said the sect leader’s wife also sustained life-threatening gunshot wound.
He said unless the bullet lodged in Mrs. Zakzaky’s spinal cord is urgently removed, she might suffer paralysis.
He, therefore, called on the authorities to give the Zakzakys urgent medical attention in view of the apparent danger they were facing.
Asked whether the SSS was not attending to their medical needs, Mr. Danladi said every Nigerian has a right to decide where to go for medical treatment.
“Every Nigerian has the right to decide where to go for medical treatment. That is if there are enough facilities in the country to carter for him. After all, the president sought for medical attention abroad for his ear infection,” he said.
In an earlier statement by the President of the IMN Media Forum, Ibrahim Musa, the group had said it was in the interest of the Nigerian State and those holding Mr. Zakzaky, to release him unconditionally to enable him attend to his heath.
Mr. Musa hinted that a relation, who visited the sect leader confirmed that his health and that of wife was fast deteriorating.
“From the report of the close relation, the health of our leader has deteriorated further; his left eye is in dire need of specialized medical attention,” Mr. Musa had said.
“The doctor assigned to the Sheikh has reportedly given up on getting it back to its normal state. His left arm where he sustained gunshot wounds is still demobilized and the wounds are yet to heal.
“The Islamic Movement in Nigeria is deeply concerned about the health of our incarcerated leader and believes that it is in the interest of the Nigerian State and those holding him to release him unconditionally to enable him attend to his heath.
“The Nigerian people are aware and the international community is aware that our leader has not been accused of committing any offence and has not been charged for one and has not been arraigned before any competent court of the land for the past eight months.
“We firmly believe it was Allah that has spared the life of our revered leader out of his mercy, even though those who wish him dead were averse to it.
“However, it is the height of injustice to deny the Sheikh the best medical attention taking into consideration all that has been done to him, his family and millions of his followers. Of what benefit will it be to our nation if his health deteriorates beyond salvation?”
The sect argued that if the claim that Mr. Zakzaky was in “protective custody” by the DSS counsel is to be taken seriously, then attention to his health should be of paramount importance to those holding him “hostage.”
“Though a glimpse of the report of the Judicial Commission of inquiry submitted to Kaduna State Government has indicted the Army for its brutality against the Sheikh and his followers in Zaria, the least expected from the government is to release him to us so we give him proper medical attention,” the statement by the sect continued.
“Refusal to do just this is an indication that the federal government has some ulterior motives and wants to keep him in custody and allow his health to deteriorate further.
“We would like to appeal to those that have the ears of this government, well-meaning Nigerians and the international community to insist on the unconditional release of our Leader Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky and all those detained with him in the aftermath of the Zaria carnage last December.”