There appears to be some renewed efforts by the government and its agents and agencies to indelibly label the Movement as “violent and terrorist” as a means of “finally nailing the coffin once and for all.” By this evil design, the free Zakzaky campaign now gaining momentum and indeed the Movement, will be done away with finality. This is a multi-faceted scheme with involvement of agents at various levels and layers.
Recently, the Federal Attorney General, Mr. Abubakar Malami SAN, gave an indication that proved that some sinister motives were behind their refusal to obey court judgement, when he hid under the cover of what he termed “public interest” as against the tag of “protective custody” they initially used.
The bait here is to initiate some very alarming disruption of public peace in the name of the Islamic Movement in order to reach their goals. This evil design of disruption of peace in our name is plotted to be of a magnitude and proportions as to sufficiently frighten the public and want them want to avoid us like a plague. This will swing public opinion against us and want to go for our jugular, especially the law courts.
The plots by the security forces have thickened to carry out series of attacks of such a large scale and proportions that will be subsequently attributed to the Movement, starting from the course of our peaceful activities using their agents within. In that way, they hope to associate the peaceful campaigns to free Sheikh Zakzaky with violence, and from there, the security forces will take it from there and escalate it to the scale and scope they desire. This two-faced machination of the Security to pretend they are working to enforce peace and security while in fact they mean evil is very much known to us.
We want to unequivocally state for the umpteenth times that the use of violence is never in our character. Our leader, Sheikh Zakzaky has categorically said times without numbers that we are out to save lives and not to destroy them. He said anytime you here a shot and it is said to be coming from our direction, you should know that it is fake as we do not use weapons or violent tactics to achieve our goals. There is nowhere we have clearly demonstrated that than in the present campaigns since the brutal massacre of over a thousand of our members and the detention of our leader illegally for the past two years. For some time now we have been staging peaceful protest marches and sit-outs in Abuja to press home our demand for the freedom of our revered Leader Sheikh Zakzaky, his wife and several others in detention since the Zaria massacre of December 2015. We have not for once resorted to the use of terror tactics. This is not about to change.
We therefore reject any form of violence or use of terror tactics in our name. The Islamic Movement is not and should not be held responsible for any breech of peace or violence that will result from any false-flag plots. We will continue to employ all lawful, legal and constitutional means as we have done throughout these two years of state-perpetrated persecution to achieve our goals, and would not be blackmailed into submission or surrender. Our timely rallies, processions and campaign activities will continue as at when due and in our ways without fear of intimidation.
Rather than beat about the bush toying with ideas of how to link innocent people with violence and thereby further shed innocent blood, the government should immediately free our leader and his wife, whose health is deteriorating by the day.
PRESIDENT MEDIA FORUM OF ISLAMIC MOVEMENT IN NIGERIA