Government has no case against us, say El-Zakzaky
Leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), known as Shiites, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky and his wife, Zeenat, have said there is no case against them by the government.
El-Zakzaky and his wife have been standing trial for alleged culpable homicide since December 2015 following the clash between the Shiites and the convoy of the then Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt-Gen. Tukur Buratai, in Zaria, Kaduna State.
However, the judge, Justice Gideon Kurada, has adjourned the case till May 25 for ruling on ‘no case submission’.
At the resumed hearing yesterday, the prosecution closed its case by calling its last witness to testify, bringing the number of witnesses presented in court to 15.
Fielding questions from journalists shortly after the court session, lead counsel to the IMN leader, Femi Falana (SAN), represented by Marshal Abubakar, said: “Eventually, they called the last witness today. There are 15 witnesses. So the last was called today to testify to the happenings and events of December 12 and 14, 2015.
“The state eventually closes its case today. They have asked for a day for us to enter our defence. We would be consulting with our client. There has been no case submission so far; what we filed earlier was a motion to quash and trash before the commencement of the trial. But at this stage, the state has called its witnesses and it is our view that there is no case so far established against the defendants.”
Meanwhile, the Director of Public Prosecution, Mr. Dari Bayero, also told journalists: “The state called 25 witnesses to prove its case against the accused persons.
He expressed confidence that justice would prevail at the end of the proceeding.
“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 defence had intended to recall to make a no-case submission, and defence at the same time. The court adjoined till May 25 for that purpose.”
He expressed satisfaction in the proceedings. “We have called 15 witnesses for the prosecution. Top is Army Generals who were key actors in the whole saga that led to the filing of the charges against El-Zakzaky. Our prayers are that the court should over-rule the ‘no case submission’ of the defence and pass the necessary sentence as provided in the law.”
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