A federal high court in Abuja has ordered the Department of State Services (DSS) to release Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), as well as members of his family.
It’s been almost a year since the cleric was arrested following a clash between members of his sect and soldiers leading to the massacre of hundreds of Shi’ites.
The DSS had held Zakzaky without charge since then, breaching his fundamental human rights and claimimg that it was holding him for his own protection.
“The decision to hold the applicant and his wife for their safety is based on which law?” asked Justice Gabriel Kolawole on Friday when the case was called before his court.
“I have not been shown any incident report or any complaint lodged by residents around the neighbourhood that the applicant has become a nuisance to his neighbourhood.”
He then ordered the DSS to release Zakzaky to police custody.
The judge said within 45 days, the government should release Zakzaky and his family to the police who would guard them at a safe place.
He further awarded N50 million to Zakzaky and his wife.