December 3, 2020

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General, Colonel testify as Zakzaky’s trial resumes in Kaduna

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By AbdulGafar Alabelewe, Kaduna

Two senior military officers, a Major-General and a Colonel on Wednesday testified before the Kaduna State High Court presided over by Justice Gideon Kurada, as the trial of leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, otherwise known as ‘Shi’ites’, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and wife, resumed.

The Shiite leader and wife are standing trial for culpable homicide punishable with death and disruption of public peace.

Speaking shortly after court proceedings on Wednesday, counsel to Zakzaky, Femi Falana (SAN) told newsmen that the two senior military officers testified in court against Zakzaky.

He said the General and the Colonel were among the witnesses assembled by the prosecution lawyer to testify against his clients.

He said, “Two witnesses were taken and the trial will continue tomorrow. The prosecution are not likely to close the case tomorrow.

Read Also: Shi’ites protest over El-Zakzaky’s health, freedom

“The officers were put under cross-examination and they gave evidence of the operation that lasted between the 12th and the 14th of December 2015, and the role of the military in the operation.”

The IMN leader had on Sept 29 had taken his plea of not guilty to the eight count charge bothering on culpable homicide among others before Tue court.

The presiding judge had taken the no – case- submission by the IMN leader in August 7, 2020

However, Justice Kurada fixed Sept. 29, for ruling on the motion after counsel to the defendant, Abubakar Marshall who took brief lead counsel(Femi Falana, SAN) asked the court to quash the charges preferred against El-Zakzaky by the government for not “disclosing an offence known to law contrary to sections 36 (8) and (12) of the 1999 constitution as amended.”

At the resumed sitting, Kurada again reserved ruling in the motion until hearing in the substantive suit.

Consequently, the Judge, after taking the plea of the IMN leader, adjourned until Nov. 18 and Nov. 19 to enable the prosecution present it’s witnesses.

Recall that the Prosecution Counsel amd State Director of Public Prosecution, Mr Dari Bayero had told newsmen shortly after court proceedings on September 29, 2020, said he had assembled more than 20 witnesses to give evidence before the court.

Dari had claimed that personnel of Nigerian Army and that of the Nigeria Police Force were among witnesses assembled to give evidence in the case against the leader of the IMN.

While the court proceedings were ongoing, all routes leading to the State High Court were barricaded by the police and other sister security operatives such as men of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps among others.

Katsina, Ibrahim Taiwo and other adjourning streets to the court were barricaded and motorists and other road users were diverted to other routes.