MEMBERS of the Shiite Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) have been warned by the Progressive Yoruba Youth Council (PYYC) to keep their protests over the continued detention of their leader Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky away from the southwest if the country.
Over the last few weeks, the IMN has intensified its protests in Abuja, demanding the release of Sheikh El-Zakzaky, who has been in detention since December 2015. Nigeria’s House of Representatives have called on the federal government to hold talks with the IMN to resolve their grievances.
Lawmakers warned that the Shiites were becoming a security threat like Boko Haram, who began their campaign against the Nigerian state in 2009 when the police shot several of their members. Internationally, there have also been numerous protests against Sheikh El-Zakzaky’s continued incarceration, with Iran organising demonstrations outside Nigerian foreign missions.
As the protests grow, the PYYC has cautioned the IMN, against taking their protest to Lagos State and the entire Oduduwa region. PYCC national chairman Dayo Jacob, fingered some politicians as faces behind the activities of the sect and warned the IMN to desist from its plan of inflicting harm on innocent citizens in an attempt to make the country ungovernable.
Mr Jacob said: “The Progressive Yoruba Youth Council the umbrella organisation for the youths of Oduduwa extraction in southwest Nigeria dedicated to sustaining the ideals of the Oduduwa Empire took a cursory look at the sudden resurgence of the violent tendencies of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) with a view to ascertaining the motives behind their actions and putting issues in proper perspective for the discerning members of the general public. The IMN in recent times has undertaken violent protest in the federal capital territory Abuja and some parts of Nigeria in an attempt to drive home a hidden agenda of making the country ungovernable and thereby subjecting innocent citizens to untold hardship.
“The Progressive Yoruba Youth Council in line with its core mandate of bringing to the fore issues that affects the relative peace and tranquillity in the Oduduwa kingdom and by extension Nigeria, undertook a systematic research on the issues been canvassed by the IMN that led to the death of law enforcement officers and the disruption of peace and tranquillity in the country. The Progressive Yoruba Youth Council consequently deployed its resources and network across the country with the sole aim of unravelling the motives of the IMN that led to the resurgence of violent protest in the country.
“The Progressive Yoruba Youth Council commissioned a high powered delegation of a special investigative committee to look at the issues objectively by activating its array of network in Nigeria and the findings were subjected to series of checks in an attempt to put forward a balanced discovery for the members of the unsuspecting general public. The findings of the committee were mind-boggling, and an indication the indeed the activities of the IMN are sponsored by individuals and organisations with an ulterior motive on the continued existence of Nigeria as a country.”
PYYC leaders urged the IMN and their sponsors to desist from their nefarious activities and explore peaceful means of airing their grievances if they are indeed genuine. It added that there is credible evidence to indicate that the IMN protest is sponsored by wealthy politicians that are yet to get over their electoral defeats in the recently concluded general elections in the country.