By AbdulMumin Giwa
A day to the release of thirteen arrested members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria by a Magistrate Court in Kaduna, after they were handed over to the Police Command by the 1 Div Military Police Corp and charged for breach of peace in Zaria,
for their participation in a peaceful pro-Palestinian protest, the perpetrators of the extra-judicial killing and torture, are at it again.
A Lagos-based newspaper, National Daily presented a story titled, “My sons’ blood cry for vengeance- El- Zakzaky”, dated Sunday, 03 August 2014, in which it insinuated a planned uprising by members of the Islamic Movement, which only looked more like a continuation of the mischievous plan of the perpetrators of extra-judicial killing and torture during the pro-Palestinian peaceful protest in Zaria.
Although the acclaimed writer, Shehu Dauda, was not able to bring any evidence of where he quoted the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria Sayyid Ibraheem Zakzaky saying, “My sons’ blood, cry for vengeance”, he went ahead to claim that the revered Islamic leader may “renege on his alleged promise not to take violent action to protest the alleged killing of his three children by security agents…”
The personality of Sayyid Ibraheem Zakzaky (H) is that of a person that has never for once been found wanting in his words or actions. He is that personality that never goes back on his words; a rare display of honesty consistency and focus that had earned him the loyalty and support of millions of followers both home and abroad.
Since the incident in which Nigerian soldiers killed 33 members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria including three of the leader’s children, Sayyid Ibraheem Zakzaky (H) had in a press conference at his residence called for calm and restraint. This statement alone kept the entire members of the Movement composed and calm.
The leader’s call for calm and restraint was in order to avert further bloodshed that might affect innocent people. He described this as the best approach to the acts of instigation by the blood mongers who are bent on disrupting peace and creating chaos to achieve their personal greed.
The National Daily newspaper went further to claim that a "highly informed source" told the equally anonymous reporter that, Sayyid Zakzaky (H) had started making "subtle contacts" with fundamentalist organizations oversea to unleash religious unrest. This insinuation shows that the newspaper must either be part of the perpetrators of the killings, whose plans have been thwarted by the silence of the revered Leader, which they never envisaged, or simply a concocted lie by the newspaper to achieve violent objective.
Notwithstanding, we members of the Movement are forced to believe that the insinuation by the newspaper that if Sayyid Zakzaky (H) fails to do something about the killing of his sons that no one could “tame his restive followers”, is only, but a mischief and setting the stage for further violence. The Islamic Movement in Nigeria is the most organized peaceful mass movement of the people on the African continent with a consistent, focused and committed leadership system. Under this Movement, the leadership is not influenced by the selfish volitions, personal whims or caprices of the followership but by the aims, objective and principles of the Movement and its ideology.
Such insinuations like some people working on plans to take “violent actions” having seized the initiative from the leader are deceptive and inconceivable. This is a disgrace to the journalism profession, as it displays its inability to adapt to the basic principles of journalism.
We therefore view the story by the National Daily as a plan by the perpetrators of the brutal killings and torture of our innocent brothers and sisters in Zaria to take their terrorist activities to a higher level, and blame the Islamic Movement just as they have been doing across the country, bombing, killing innocent people and sacking towns and in villages in the name of Boko Haram. They are indeed the true Boko Haram.
It is worth mentioning that Sayyid Ibraheem Zakzaky (H) has on several occasions mentioned that “whenever you see crises and bloodshed being perpetrated and you want to know the perpetrator, simply look for the one benefiting from it; he is the real perpetrator.” Against this backdrop, we ask:, Who benefits from any bloodshed or crisis? Is it the armless members of the Islamic Movement, the innocent citizens or the stooges representing the imperialists who are all out for war on the oppressed? Definitely the revered leader of the Islamic Movement and the innocent citizens has nothing to benefit from any bloodshed.
We declare that the insinuations contained in the story are blatant lies aimed at the stage by the terrorists that killed our brothers and sisters in Zaria to further unleash terror on the innocent populace and cover up their shame.
It is clear to all that no one has any reason to fear Sayyid Ibraheem Zakzaky (H) and his followers, looking at the diversed category of people paying condolence visits to him, describing him as having unique leadership qualities worthy of emulation.
People who condoled Sayyid included Politicians, Religious Scholars, Civil Servants, Government Delegations, Diplomats, Businessmen, Academicians and many others. They never saw the revered leader of the Movement on hunger strike, crying and chanting Allahu Akbar all day, as allegedly claimed by National Daily. What they rather saw a composed and calm personality with warmth reception, and never looked like a man mourning the death of his sons and calling for vengeance, as depicted in the story by National Daily.
It is pertinent to mention here that the Islamic Movement in Nigeria is not an armed movement, and it is never in its policy, even while it had been a victim of state terrorism for 35 years of its history.
The protest in which 33 members of the movement were killed, the International Quds Day is commemorated everywhere around the world including Washington, London, Paris and even Jerusalem. Pro-Palestinian protest is a humanitarian activity and not just a religious issue. The fact that the protest is conducted in Nigeria under the leadership of Sayyid Zakzaky (H) does not make it a sectarian or religious activity as there were also Christians that were victims of the killings.
Nations that showed concern and described by the National Daily as “fundamentalist elements” such as Iran, Lebanon and Turkey all have diplomatic relations with Nigeria. It is only natural for such countries to be ensure that their people working in their diplomatic missions are safe. This is only an act of diplomatic responsibility on their part. National Daily should ask Nigerian government why it is having diplomatic ties with “fundamentalist elements”. It is our opinion that the mentioned countries summon the National Daily newspaper for fro a legal explanation of their statement.
We hereby call on the National Daily newspaper to withdraw its malicious and abusive write-up and apologize to the Islamic Movement in Nigeria for portraying it in bad light, failure of which might attract legal actions.
sign: ABDUL MUMIN GIWA
Media Forum of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria