Skip to content Skip to footer

150 days after the Zaria Massacre by Army: Justice still denied

More than 1000 people are believed to have been killed on 12-14 December 2015 when Nigerian armed forces attacked the Islamic movement in its home city of Zaria in northern Nigeria targeting its members and supporters, property, religious places and symbols.

The revered guardian, his Eminence Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky and his wife Malama Zeenat were both fatally shot in the attack and their family home burned down and demolished. They were abducted and are currently in the custody of Nigeria’s secret services, detained without charge and kept incommunicado. Three of their sons were killed in the attack. This was in addition to the three already killed in July 2014 by the same Army.

The military assault was pre-planned and highly organised. They orchestrated a hoax theory and theatre of clash or assassination attempt at COAS in order to deceive people.   During their orgy of violence soldiers targeted the elimination of the leadership of the IMN and its symbols. They destroyed the Hussainiyyah Baqiyatullah which served as the movement’s headquarters, demolished the premises housing the tomb of Sheikh Zakzaky’s mother and smashed up graves belonging to the victims of the July 2014 Quds pogrom including a mosque at the Darur Rahmah.

The Military violated all rules of engagement and committed gross crimes against humanity. Gunshots using sophisticated weapons were fired at armless civilians, women and children. They used armoured tank. They employed RPGs on civilian targets. Some members were reportedly burnt alive or hacked to death with machetes and knives. Yet the perpetrators of all these inhuman atrocities are dancing on the streets whereas the victims are incarcerated. Nigeria we hail thee!!!

To add salt to injury, the 200+ IMN members detained in Kaduna Prison , are being charged with culpable homicide for allegedly killing a fabricated soldier. As all these are not enough, IMN members are continuously being threatened. Current tensions in Katsina,  delayed justice to illegally detained members in Kebbi, Unwarranted arrests of men women and minors in Gwandu, all attest to these provocative actions by the  Nigerian Authorities. 

The so called democratic President Buhari continue to take a pretentious inactive stance. He still awaits the report of the kangaroo highly partial and dependent Judicial Commission of inquiry set by one of the culprits, governor El- rufa’i. During its proceedings, a key revelation is the admission of Kaduna State Government  that it has, in conjunction with the Army, presided over the burial of 347 corpses of men, women and children in a single mass grave at Mando in Kaduna suburbs.

Already the IMN, in conjunction with the UK based IHRC was proactive to refer this massacre to the International Criminal Court, , ICC. Recent comprehensive report by the Amnesty International is indicative to the fact that there were gross human rights violations by the Nigerian Army at Zaria.

For how long shall the supposed democratic government in Nigeria continue to breach the rule of law which was the basis of its establishment?

For how long can it continue the illegal detention of the innocent and pure souls of Elzakzaky and his wife Zeenat? 

For how long would they continue to detain brothers with framed up charges? For how long could they continue to frame up charges of culpable homicide on minors whose parents were massacred in cold blood at the Zaria mayhem?

We, the students, staff and other members of the academic community , unequivocally demand the following:

– Immediate and uncondutional release of Sheikh ElZakzaky and his wife Malama Zeenat

– immediate and unconditional release of all members of the IMN in prison and other secret services detention centers

– Immediate cessation of all hostilities to the members of IMN in Kaduna, Zaria, Katsina, Kebbi, Jos, and other parts of the country.

We re-echo that

Zakzaky must be freed. #FreeZakzaky#. #GodprotectZakzaky#


Abdullahi Ibrahim

Academic Forum of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria

12th May 2016