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After its meeting on Saturday, 19th Dec, the Northern Governors’ Forum, planned to ban all peaceful protests in Northern Nigeria. The plan is seen by many as a deliberate attempt to silence the followers of Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky despite the genocide against them. 

Surprisingly, the Forum has not responded to the demand of the Movement on the urgent need for the unconditional release of its leader for medical attention.  In addition to that, the Forum has not said anything with regard to the need for thousands of corpses, patients and those arrested by the Military.

Peaceful procession is a constitutional right of every citizen to express his or her grievances whenever the need arises. Banning of such processions regardless of the genocide and other grievances by the Governors’ Forum is double standard and a measure to escalate the bloodshed of innocents people demanding release of the Sheikh whose where about remains unknown after he was arrested by the Nigerian soldiers last Sunday. The arrest followed generally condemned crimes against humanity.

The chairman of the Governors’ Forum Kasim Shetima made known its stand after the meeting in Kaduna last Saturday.

In his response after the statement, Sheikh Yakub Yahya has reiterated the need of the Islamic Movement for urgent and unconditional release of the Sheikh. He debunked the allegation of road blockage as baseless, because such periodic blockages happen due to public and religious, Political events nationwide.  Then why should the Movement be an exception?  

During  programmes organised by the Islamic Movement, there is always adequate arrangement  for free traffic flow wihtout blockage.

In another development, the Kaduna state Governor Nasir El-Rufa’i insisted on prosecuting the Sheikh. The question is for what offense would the Sheikh be prosecuted when his three sons and thousands of defenseless followers were killed in an unprovoked attack by the Nigerian soldiers in Zaria?

Meanwhile, prominent individuals, groups and organizations across the world condemn the genocide which they express as war crime against humanity expressing the urgent to probe and bring the culprit to book.