The inability of the legal counsel to the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (Shiites) to get access to its leader, Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky, Wednesday stalled the sitting of the judicial Commission of inquiry into the clash between the Nigerian Army and members of the Movement in Kaduna.
The Commission had at its inaugural sitting on Monday adjourned its sitting till Wednesday following the absence of the counsel to the Movement at the panel.
When the counsel to the Movement, Mr. Maxwel Kyon appeared before the Commission, he pleaded for two weeks adjournment to enable him get access to his client.
Conseequently, Chairman of the Commission, Justice Muhammadu Lawal Garba, asked the counsel to the Nigerian Army, Mr. Abba Audu to state his posistion regarding the plea by Zakzaky. The Army’s counsel did not oppose the plea, saying that it was in the interest of justice.
On the contrary, the counsel to the Commission, Usman Yunus Ustaz (SAN), objected the plea, saying that two weeks were too long to be granted since the panel has only six weeks to conclude its sitting.
The Commission chairman did not grant Zakzaky’s plea, but adjourned sitting till Monday, February 29, as a grace for the counsel to get access to his client.
“We are adjourning till February 29 to enable you get access to your client, and whether you get access to him or not, you have to report back to the Commission so that we can continue with the proceedings.”
He said that the Islamic Movement had before now faulted the 13-man composition of the panel, saying some of its members were already against the Movement.
Speaking with newsmen shortly after the adjournment, Zakzaky’s counsel, Mr. Maxwel Kyon disclosed that the embattled Shiites leader was in the custody of the Directorate of the State Security (DSS), adding that the police and other security agencies were preventing him from having access to his client.