The Kaduna State Government is seeking the death penalty for 50 members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, otherwise known as Shi’ites, for causing the death of a soldier.
The state government, made the request on Thursday when it filed a five count charge against the Shi’ite members before Justice David Wyom of the Kaduna State High Court.
The government, in the charge, accused the Shi’ite members of criminal conspiracy, unlawful assembly, culpable homicide, disturbance of public peace and wrongful restrain.
In the charge, the counsel to the government, Bayero Diri, said the offences are punishable under Sections 97, 221, 102, 106 and 225 of the Penal Code Law, Laws of Kaduna State 1991 and were committed between December 12 and 14, 2015 in Zaria.
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The accused persons were among other things, alleged to have shot dead Yakubu Dankaduna, a corporal of the Nigerian Army “with a gun when he alighted from the convoy to disperse the IMN members.“.
The prosecution informed the court that it would be calling 39 witnesses.
The trial judge, Justice Wyom adjourned the case to May 16 without taking the pleas of the accused person.
According to reports, the 50 suspects were among the 265 persons currently in custody, who were arrested during the Shiites clash with the Army on Dec. 12 and Dec. 14, 2015.
It would be recalled that members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, otherwise known as Shi’ites, clashed with the convoy of the Chief of Army Staff in Zaria, after they allegedly blocked the route the Army chief was traveling on to a military function in the city. The clash reportedly led to the death of about 300 shi’ites members.
The Leader of the movement, Sheikh El-Zakzaky and his wife were reportedly shot and arrested in the aftermath of the clash. They have remained in detention since then.
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