The Federal Government on Friday raised the alarm over alleged plans by the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, to seek asylum.
The government specifically said his actions in India demonstrated malicious intents that were capable of embarrassing the governments of Nigeria and India.
A statement issued in Abuja by the Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, Grace Isu Gekpe, entitled: “The repatriation of Ibraheem El-Zakzaky from India”, said the wife of the IMN leader also antagonised the Indian and Nigerian security agencies and accused them of killing her children to win international sympathy as well as disparage the Nigerian government.
The statement reads: “The Federal Government wishes to inform the public about the latest development in the Ibraheem El-zakzaky medical trip controversies to India. The government notes with dismay the acts of misconduct exhibited by El-Zakzaky that necessitated his repatriation.
“The earlier statement of August 14, 2019, by the government addressed the issues that would have raised some questions with the latest occurrences and particularly the uncelebrated return of El-Zakzaky from India.
“The public may note that El-Zakzaky’s actions in India demonstrated malicious intents that were capable of embarrassing the governments of Nigeria and India. With total disrespect and complete loss of decorum for international procedures while in India, he initiated contacts with a team of lawyers led by Ali Zia Kabir Chaudary and Gunjan Singh in that country.
“He also contacted some Non-Governmental Organisations, such as the Islamic Human Rights Commission and other Shiite groups. His aim was to seek asylum and eventually relocate to another country. It is important to note that if an Indian court had granted El-Zakzaky asylum or leave to travel to another country, it would have violated the Nigerian court order that granted him permission to travel for medical treatment.
“However, he used the opportunity of being in India to attempt to internationalise his cause by mobilising the Rights groups. Even most unfortunate and rather embarrassing as earlier stated, was his quest to be relocated to a 5-Star hotel to receive visitors instead of being admitted in the hospital as a sick person he claimed to be.
“In spite of his misconduct, El-Zakzaky’s spouse went further to antagonize the Indian and Nigerian security agents and accused the latter of killing her children. These acts were aimed at winning international sympathy as well as disparaging the Nigerian government.
“Having subordinated the quest for medical treatment to other ulterior motives, it became obvious that El-Zakzaky was focused on realising some sinister motives, thus the decision to return him to Nigeria.”
JUST IN: IGP Seeks Algeria’s Support To Combat Terrorism, Insurgency
Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, has appealed for Algeria’s support to combat insurgency and terrorism in the country.
Adamu made the appeal when he received a delegation of the African Police Organization (AFRIPOL) General Assembly led by its President and Inspector General of Police of Algeria, H. E. Khelifa Ounissi, at the Force Headquarters in Abuja.
More to follow…
BREAKING: Senate Confirms Capt. Nuhu As DG NCAA
The Senate on Tuesday confirmed the nomination of Captain Musa Shuaibu Nuhu for appointment as the Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).
The approval of the Senate followed the presentation and consideration of the screening report of the Senator Smart Adeyemi-led Senate Committee on Aviation at plenary in Abuja.
‘Stop Interfering On National Security Matters’ — NSA Monguno Issues Stern Warning To Abba Kyari
Nigeria’s national security adviser, Babagana Monguno, has accused President Muhammadu Buhari’s Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari, of undue and dangerous interference on national security matters.
Consequently, Mr Monguno has fired a warning memo to all service chiefs to desist from taking further directives from Mr Kyari, according to documents seen by PREMIUM TIMES.
Mr Monguno said Mr Kyari’s directives to service chiefs were sometimes issued without the knowledge much less approval of the president, a practice he said has added to government’s failure to contain insecurity.
“Chief of staff to the president is not a presiding head of security, neither is he sworn to an oath of defending the country,” Mr Monguno, a retired major-general, said in the December 9, 2019, letter.
“As such, unprofessional practices such as presiding over meetings with service chiefs and heads of security organisations as well as ambassadors and high commissioners to the exclusion of the NSA and/or supervising ministers are a violation of the Constitution and directly undermine the authority of Mr President.
“Such acts and continues meddlesomeness by chief of staff have not only ruptured our security an defence efforts but have slowed down any meaningful gain that Mr President has sought to achieve.”
Mr Monguno’s letter comes as insecurity returns to centre stage as a major cause for worry among Nigerians.
Violent attacks linked to bandits, kidnappers, armed robbers and vandals have continued to claim multiple lives and properties across the country.
The president has repeatedly promised to curb the crises, many of which he met in office, but has largely failed like his predecessors.
Security experts, opposition and federal lawmakers have responded by advising the president to fire his service chiefs.
The service chiefs have been unable to rein in Boko Haram insurgents since 2015 when Mr Buhari named them to take charge of various arms of the nation’s security architecture.
While previously held swathes of land have been taken back from terrorists, deadly attacks on civilians and military targets have worsened since 2018.
The Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, said in recent media interviews that the military has degraded insurgents’ capacity to attack Abuja and other cities outside the war-ravaged northeast.
National security sources told PREMIUM TIMES on Monday that the fresh memo showed how Mr Kyari has helped in keeping the service chiefs in office despite overwhelming call for their ouster.
It also underscored the frustration faced by Mr Monguno and others who found Mr Kyari’s influence over the president too domineering for national benefit, sources said.
Mr Kyari and two presidential spokespersons, Femi Adesina and Garba Shehu did not return requests for comments about the memo Monday afternoon.
See Monguno’s letter below: