Ibraheem Yaqoub El-Zakzaky and his wife Maillimah Zeenah were arrested in 2015 after the Nigerian army massacred almost 400 Muslims in Zaria, Kaduna State. Sheikh al-Zakzaky, a leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, was injured and arrested along with his wife. The couple have nine children; six of them were murdered by the state. They were kept in state detention since 2015.
On 2 December 2016, they were ordered to be released from Department of State Services detention into police custody within 45 days. The judge announced that the justification of “holding him for his own protection” is not sufficient. He also ordered the state to pay $164,052 in compensation. The state refused to let them go.
In 2019, a court in Kaduna state granted him and his wife bail to seek treatment abroad but they returned from India after 3 days because of unfair treatment and restrictions by security services. Finally on July 28, 2021, Justice Gideon Kurada of the Kaduna State High Court discharged and acquitted them of culpable homicide, and unlawful assembly, among other criminal charges for which they have been standing trial since December 2018.
The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), a founding member of the Decolonial International Network Foundation, has been in de forefront of the campaign to free Zakzaky and Zeenah. Follow the campaign here.