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JUST IN: Kaduna Court acquits El-Zakzaky, wife, orders their immediate release from detention

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Secret trial of Sheikh El-Zakzaky, wife adjourned to 2021

A High Court in Kaduna State on Wednesday acquitted the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and his wife.

The court also directed that they should be immediately released from detention and set free.

This is not the first time the court have ordered that the cleric and his wife be set free, but the government has continued to keep them both in detention.

In a ruling that lasted eight hours, Justice Gideon Kurada discharged the couple on an eight-count charge of culpable homicide, disruption of public peace, and unlawful assembly among others levelled against them by the Kaduna State government.

The government had accused El-Zakzaky and his wife of being responsible for the death of a soldier during a rally by the Shiites members in Zaria in December 2015.

READ ALSO: Court fixes July 28 to hear El-Zakzaky’s no-case-submission

The judge also upheld a “no case” submission filed by the IMN leader’s lead counsel, Femi Falana (SAN).

The trial of El-Zakzaky and his wife was not without intrigues as all the roads leading to the court were blocked by fierce-looking security officers stationed at strategic locations in the Kaduna State capital.

Security operatives, including the police and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), were put on red alert to forestall any breakdown of law and order.

Offices and other business outlets in the area were also under lock and key as shop owners and workers refused to come out for fear of the unknown.

Journalists were also barred from covering the proceedings.

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