Sheikh Zakzaky’s case adjourned to May 25
A Court in Kaduna has adjourned the case of Sheikh Ibrahim el-Zakzaky to May 25 for ruling on No case submission, even as the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) and his wife, Mallimah Zeenah insisted that there is no case against them.
The prosecution at the resumed hearing on Wednesday, closed its case by calling its last witness to testify. This brought the total number of witnesses presented in the court to 15.
Lead Counsel to Zakzaky, Femi Falana (SAN), who was represented in court by Marshal Abubakar ,told journalists after the court session that, “eventually, they called the last witness today, there are fifteen(15) witnesses. So the last was called today to testify to the happenings and events of the said 12 and 14 December 2015.”
“The State eventually closes its case today… have asked for a day to enter our defense. We would be consulting with our client,” Falana said.
“There has been no case submission so far, what we filed earlier on was a motion to quash and trash before the commencement of the trial. But at this stage, the state has indeed called their witnesses and it is our view that there is no case so far established against the defendants, ” he added.
“Filing an application to ask the court to declare that the defendants do not really have to call witness in the ongoing trial but to have them enter into ‘no case submission’ because so far based on the evidence advanced this far all the 15 witnesses in our estimation had not made submission or given evidence that incriminate the defendants,” he argued
Similarly, Dari Bayero, the Director of Public Prosecution ,said in an interview that, “the State called 15 witnesses to prove their case against the accused persons and expressed confidence that justice would prevail at the end. “The State finally rested its case by calling the last witness; it intended to call to this trial. The State closed its case and the defense had intended to recall making a no case submission and defending at the same time. The court adjoined to 25th May for that purpose,” he said.
He said as far as the state is concern, it has tendered all the exhibits, and all the key actors, key players of the case have been called and have given their submissions.
Five years have passed since hundreds of Muslims were killed in a massacre in the Nigerian city of Zaria. The incident took place when the Nigerian army stormed a religious ceremony, organized by Nigeria's Islamic Movement, which represents the Shia Muslim minority in the country.
In the massacre, which took place in Kaduna State in 2015, at least 348 civilians were killed and 347 bodies were secretly buried, according to official tally. The real death toll is said to be much higher.
Sheikh Zakzaky, who is in his mid-sixties, and his wife, sustained serious injuries during the raid and was detained. The attack also left three of his sons dead.