A mother and one of the members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria who survived the heinous acts of barbarism during the Zaria massacre, Hajiya Jumai Karofi, has narrated how she lost five of her children to various attacks on the Movement including herself who was shot five times in Zaria, Kaduna state by the rampaging Nigerian Army.
According to Hajia Karofi, one of her sons who also survived still goes about with bullet in his chest as a result of the unfortunate incidents.
Speaking with Blueprint correspondent in Abuja at a gathering to honour their members described as ‘fallen heroes and martyrs’ allegedly killed by security operatives across the country, Hajia Karofi, said nothing would make her change her mind to the cause of the movement.
“Today we are commemorating and remembering our martyrs . I as a mother have lost five of my children during the Zaria massacre and one of my son is carrying a bullet in his chest right now and also I was shot several times as you can see when I was coming they have to hold my hands because of the extent of my pain,” Karofi stated.
The leader of the group Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky, was arrested and detained since 2015 following a violent clash between his group and the Nigerian Army.
But during the remembrance event on Monday in Abuja, Chairman of the Shuhada Foundation, Sheikh Abdulhameed Bello, a foundation put in place to carter for the victims and families of those who lost their close ones for the struggle, said that the Movement has lost “998 members to the police and army brutality.”
Addressing a large gathering of members of the Movement, including those who sustained several gunshots, who were seen walking with crutches, windows and orphans, Bello assured that Shuhada foundation was put in place to take care of widows, aged parents and family members left behind by the deceased.
He stated that the foundation has sponsored education of some children from nursery to university level.
“We take care of the medical bills of anyone of them that is sick and have health challenges. We also take care of their welfare like marriage and celebration of salah programme . These martyrs as we are all aware, are those that were killed by either Nigerian army or the police ” Bello stated.
He decried the attitude of the security agencies toward the activities of the movement, saying the group would not give up in its mandate to exercise its religion belief despite the intimidation by the government institutions.
The protesters who came from various parts of the country including Kano, Kaduna, Sokoto, Nasarawa and Kebbi states, were seen wielding portraits photographs of their fallen members and chanting anti-government songs.