Leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, and his wife, Zeenat, yesterday, flew out of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja (NAIA), for New Delhi, India for medical treatment.
The couple was accompanied on the trip by a police doctor, two officials of the Department of State Security (DSS) and four family members.
The entourage was booked on an Emirates flight to New Delhi, India via Dubai.
Justice Darius Khobo of Kaduna State High Court had last Monday, granted the IMN leader’s request to take care of his deteriorating health overseas; but ruled that he would travel in the company of state officials.
An airport source informed Daily Sun on Monday that some DSS operatives arrived the airport much earlier to receive the El-Zakzakys. The two joining him on the trip were with him right from the movement from the protective custody in Kaduna till they got to the airport.
The source said: “We saw when he was led into the airport this afternoon with his wife. They took them in to complete Immigrations formalities before boarding,” the source said.
El-Zakzaky and his wife have been in protective custody in Kaduna after the court ruling.
Dr. Shuaibu Musa, a stauch member of IMN confirmed to Daily Sun in Kaduna that the IMN leader and his wife had left for India on Emirate air career in the company of some officials of the Department of State Security (DSS) and family members.
Meanwhile, some residents of Kaduna have said they were relieved because it will check the regular protest by IMN members which was becoming violent lately.
Businessman, Aliyu Yahaya said “since the IMN crisis started in 2015, we have witnessed series of protests especially here in Kaduna.
“I have businesses along Kano road and inside Chechenia market. But, any day they planned protest, we have to shut our shops. It was a must because once they come around, they would be throwing stones at us.
“We are happy that, that is becoming a history and we hope that both parties would find a better way to resolve this issue of El-Zakzaky. He’s temporary release is a big relief to us,” said Aliyu.
Another resident, who spoke to Daily Sun in confidence, called on the government to have a way of settling with IMN outside court.
Dr. Shuaibu said IMN family across the country were optimistic that their leader would go and return hail and hearty and then continue with the struggle.
He also expressed optimism that IMN would overcome all allegations of killing and terrorism levelled against it by the federal and Kaduna state government .
“He is following Emirate. He left Kaduna today (Monday) and he is at the Airport at the moment and departure would be later in the evening today. He’s being accompanied by the officials of DSS and his family members.
“We are fairly relieved at least Sheikh and his wife are going to seek medical treatment. It is a relief that he will be well again, hopefully, come back and then the struggle will continue.
“All our concern has been for him to be allowed to go and treat himself. We are not afraid of anything the government is going to push at us because we know the government was at fault.
“They accuse us of killing people which they cannot prove it in court. We are the one that they killed. They killed our members. We didn’t kill anybody. We know they can never prove it in court. So, there is no big deal about it. Our struggle will continue.
“They are saying we are terrorists or whatever, but they have not been able to show an incident in our 40 years of existence where we act as terrorists. They are only looking for ways to tag us name we don’t bare. But, that won’t deter us from continuing practicing our faith and that is the point,” he submitted.