Members of the Shiite sect also known as the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, (IMN) on Thursday barricaded the National Assembly’s entrance protesting the continued detention of their leader, Sheik Ibrahim El-Zakzaky.
Leader of the protesters and Secretary of the group’s Academic Forum in Nigeria, Mr Abdullahi Musa, told journalists that they came to the National Assembly to find out what the lawmakers were doing about the continued detention of El-Zakzaky.
He alleged that many of their members were recently killed in Kano but that government seemed to be indifferent, and would want to hear from the lawmakers what they intended to do.
According to him, the group is worried that, in spite of submitting several letters to the National Assembly, it is yet to get any reply, while their leader continues to be kept in detention.
“This is the third time we are coming here. We submitted a lot of documents to the National Assembly but we are yet to get any response.
“We submitted the third batch of documents yesterday and we came here today to hear from them,” he said.
He also said that members of the group were concerned about the safety of their leader and wanted to know the state of his health.
“We do not believe in the so-called protective custody. We want him freed so that he can go for his treatment. What we ask for is that justice prevails.
However, no lawmaker was available to listen to the Shiites protesters; instead, the divisional crime officer-in-charge of the National Assembly, Mr Francis Anebi, addressed them appealing to them to be orderly.
El-Zakzaky was arrested after the Shiite group was involved in a bloody clash with the Army in Zaria.
The group was accused of attacking the convoy of the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai while they were on procession in Zaria.