Human Rights NGO Urges UN to Pressure for Zakzaky’s Freedom

You should not allow peace, security and human rights which are the pillars of the UN shake in light of your silence,” the letter by Solh-e Ziba human rights institute said on Saturday.

It called on Guterres to entrust United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet with serious investigation into the dire health conditions of Sheikh Zakzaky whose blood has been poisoned with lead and cadmium.

The letter warned that evidence shows the Nigerian government intends to poison Sheikh Zakzaky, and said, “We want you to pave the ground as soon as possible for the freedom of Sheikh and provide him with  specialized treatment.”

Sheikh Zakzaky, who is in his mid-sixties, lost his eyesight in one eye in a 2015 raid by security forces, that left more than 300 of his followers and three of his sons dead. His wife also sustained serious wounds.

He has been kept in custody along his wife and a large number of his followers ever since.

Back in 2016, Nigeria’s federal high court ordered his unconditional release from jail following a trial, but the government has so far refused to set him free.

The medical team responsible to treat Sheikh Zakzaky warned of his poor health conditions due to damage to his liver.

The leader of Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), who has been held in detention since December 2015 following a deadly raid by the Nigerian army troops on his residence in the country’s Northern Kaduna State is unwell, the medical team warned last month.

“Lead and cadmium levels are high in his blood which is fatal,” the doctors said, adding “His liver is also damaged.”

Badia Ibraheem Zakzaky, the step daughter of Zakzaky, also expressed deep concern about her step parents’ health conditions after they were wounded and detained by the Nigerian army in Zaria region mid December 2015.

“Sheikh is suffering medical conditions in his head, neck and eyes and the situation is the same with my mother. The doctors have diagnosed lead and cadmium in his blood 20 times higher than normal levels,” Badia told FNA on Wednesday.

She reminded that lead damages all organs in the body, specially the brain, liver, blood and bones, and expressed concern that high amounts of lead in the blood can lead to stroke.

Badia noted that cadmium also causes many problems in the body, including lung cancer, and said, “Sheikh and his wife are in danger.”

She called for their immediate transfer to an equipped hospital outside Nigeria to be treated for all their problems, and said, “There are specialized hospitals in India to provide the treatment and medication needed for such diseases.”


Shawn Solomon Elliot

Ukpiebo Solomon Elliot is a talented and well motivated Professional Associate Writer, Proofreader and Political scientist. He is a graduate of Political Science and Public Administration, University of Benin and also holds a Diploma in Desktop Publishing and Computer Science.

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