Wednesday, June 26, 2019
Three years after zaria massacre: demand for justice. PDF Print E-mail
Written by freezak   
Wednesday, 09 January 2019 16:00

By Yusuf Abdullahi
In the name of Allah Who states "On account of this, We prescribed for the children of Israel that whosoever killed a person -unless it be for killing a person or for creating disorder in the land - it shall be as if he had killed all mankind; and whoso gave life to one, it shall be as if he had given life to all mankind. 

And Our Messengers came to them with clear Signs, yet even after that, many of them commit excesses in the land. many of them commit given life to all mankind" Q5:33
Peace and blessings of Allah be upon His noble servant, our master Muhammad and his purified progeny.
The piece for this week is on the 3rd anniversary of the unfortunate Zaria massacre where about a 1000 peaceful citizens were innocently murdered by the nation's military who were constitutionally mandated to protect them. Added to that, the insightful leader of the Movement, Sheikh Ibraheem el-Zakzaky, his wife and many disciples were apprehended and illegally detained. Ever since, individuals and organizations from all walks of life across the world cry out in quest of justice. The fundamental rights of speech and expression are used to draw the attention of Nigerian authority and its foreign masters on the repercussion of the tyranny meted against the Islamic Movement especially in acclaimed democratic setting mandated to respond to the needs and yearnings of the citizenry.
As usual, the London-based Islamic Human Rights Commission, an august umbrella of about 30 Islamic and other nongovernmental organizations as part of Global network for justice at the forefront, calls for international protests to mark the event. Thus, it was commemorated most notably in UK, India, Iran, Lebanon, Indonesia, Malaysia, Ghana, Mali and Nigeria. Allah states “And they ill-treated them For no other reason than That they believed in Allah, Exalted in power, Worthy of all praise! Q85:8. The seven lettered word is the central philosophy behind the establishment of all authorities. According to a popular adage, justice delay is justice denial and injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. Justice is the key to peace and stability of all nations.
No doubt, the unanimous sympathy to the unique scholar, notwithstanding humanitarian nature owes a lot to his responsible and insightful leadership widely known in the unity, peaceful coexistence and ethno-religious tolerance of Nigeria. Since the unfortunate massacre, the demands of Islamic Movement apparently remain unchanged: unconditional release of the Sheikh, his wife and other detainees; handing over the bodies of the slaughtered and mass graved to the Movement for proper Islamic burial; compensation of the destructions made, and of course the urgent need to bring the mass murderers of peaceful and innocent citizens to book.
Rallies and peaceful protests were incessantly organized by the Movement and all justice loving people across the world. Even though the calls fall flat to the ears of intended authorities, no matter how long, hope is never lost in the struggle for justice as there is always limit to oppressions. Despite the contemptuous nature of the government, the Movement is optimistic on its pending cases (issues) with the Federal High Court Kaduna, and the International Criminal Court, ICC. The dismay is consequent to the total disregard on the Justice Kolawale Abuja Court 6 verdict to release the ailing Sheikh and his wife unconditionally, provide a befitting house and security for them with a compensation of fifty million Naira which is a blatant disrespect to the rule of law. To the concerned individuals in the country and beyond, Sheikh el-Zakzaky's situation is to a large extent proportionate to the Nigeria's security and socio-economic well being.
Among other endless questions are; on what ground was the Sheikh initially arrested? In whose interest is the detention of the elderly and ailing Sheikh and his wife? What is the government's stand on the Federal High Court verdict? Why shouldn't government respond to the need of millions of Nigerians on the need to take him abroad for medication? And to what extent should the detention continue? What is the stand of the government on the over one thousand Nigerians killed in the Zaria, Kano, and Abuja masaccres evidently recorded and related incidences? This also exposes the lies of so called developed nations especially UK and USA who always claim to be at the forefront in protection and promotion of fundamental human rights across the world. What a double stand! If peace, unity and progress of this country were the uncompromising yardsticks to assess significant relevance of the citizenry, who can dare to compare his eminence, the indefatigable leader of the Islamic Movement, Shaikh Ibraheem el-Zakzaky with any scholar, politician or else in the history of Nigeria? Using my constitutional right as a concerned citizen that contributes his best to the progress of the nation in a multi-faceted dimension, I draw the attention of those in authority on the above subject as the unique Sheikh and his patient wife clock 3 years in detention, and in defiance of the Federal High Court order on their unconditional release. The indifference on the side of the government cannot help the country at all. No doubt, justice is the key to the much needed peace and stability of our nation which the Sheikh symbolizes.
In its forty years of existence, the Movement was never found wanting in vandalism or bloodshed. The Shaikh is widely credited for unequalled role in the promotion of peaceful coexistence and ethno-religious tolerance. He is deeply concerned on the well being of the country and its citizens as his Movement was described as the most organized Muslim group in Nigeria. Allah states “O you who believe! Stand out firmly For Allah, as witnesses To fair dealing, and let not The hatred of others To you make you swerve To wrong and depart from Justice. Be just: that is Next to piety: and fear Allah, For Allah is well - acquainted With all ye do” Q5:8
The Sheikh is well known for sincerity, broad mindedness, and practical teachings of Islam. He is particularly known for cordial relations with all. Basing his teachings on the Ahlul-bait perspectives, the Sheikh drewn attention on the saying of Ameerul mumineen that "a man is either brother to you in religion or a partner in creation" among others. As such, he is the champion of Muslim unity evident in his annual Unity week and other related programmes. He is generally known in the face of fighting tyranny and oppression, for which he suffers untold hardship for the past four decades. He is apparently a sincere, honest and indefatigable Islamic scholar per excellence worthy of the world respect. In the compendium of thirteen speeches delivered at Najaf in 1970, Imam Khomeini stated; "The scholars of Islam have a duty to struggle against all attempts by oppressors to establish a monopoly over the sources of wealth or to make illicit use of them. They must not allow the masses to remain hungry and deprived while plundering oppressors usurp the sources of wealth and live in opulence". He also said "A clergyman should be such that when the people see him, they should remember the messenger of Allah (S). You have accepted this heavy responsibility and it is you that should guide this people to the end".
Impressively, the Christian association of Nigeria's (CAN), on their speech during a courtesy call on the presidency delivered by their representatives at the Villa, most importantly advised the government among others on;
1. A presidential order to the Police and other security agencies to be non-partisan, neutral and apolitical in the coming general election with a view to securing international respect and honour for our country in the comity of nations. The degree of desperation we saw in the politicians during the intra-party elections that took place recently do not give many people hope concerning 2019 unless serious steps are taken to let decency prevail. We appeal to you to make sure that the law enforcement agents and the election umpire do their work professionally without intimidation of voters, manipulation and any trace of violence throughout the period of elections. We believe that the survival and peace of Nigeria are greater than the ambition of any politician.
2. We again request that your administration conducts free and fair election that would add to the accolades the country received from the conduct of 2015 elections that brought you to power.
3. Restoration of peace and sanity in troubled spots in the country, especially in the States of Adamawa, Benue, Plateau, Taraba, Kaduna and Zamfara.
4. Enhancement of security and flushing out of attackers in many towns as is in Gashish District on the Plateau, in order to allow sacked communities in the various IDP camps return to their towns and villages.
We urge your administration to invest more on intelligence gathering and ensure that our security agents work on them before the terrorists would strike. Total adherence to the rule of law as is required by our constitution and full blown democracy by making sure that those whose bails have been granted by competent courts like Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd) and leader of the Shiites, Malam Ibrahim El-Zakzaky are released from detention to enjoy the bail granted them by the courts of law. This would ease tension in the land and give credit to your administration together with respect from the international community.
While reiterating the need for the unconditional release of the Sheikh (H) and his disciples, I urge the Muslim Ummah in particular and international community to stand with the oppressed and speak against tyranny in support of justice any where any time.
Wassalamu alaikum.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 09 January 2019 16:07