A High Court in Kaduna on Thursday fixed February 24 and 25, for the continuation of trial of the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, and his wife, Zinat.
The judge, Gideon Kurada, at the resumed hearing of the case on Thursday, again adjourned the case to allow the defendants appear in court to take their plea.
Mr El-Zakzaky counsel, Femi Falana (SAN) told journalists after the adjournment that Zinat, the second defendant and wife of the IMN leader was ill, therefore his clients were not in court.
The IMN leader and his wife, Zinat, are standing trial on allegations of culpable homicide, unlawful assembly and disruption of public peace, among other charges, in another court.
Mr Falana said Mr Kurada had granted the defendants’ application to allow them access to their personal physicians to enable them to appear in court and take their plea at the next adjournment date.
He said the court had also granted the prosecution counsel’s application to amend the charges to reflect that the two other accused persons were still at large.
Mr Falana assured that the defendants would be in court to take their pleas on the next adjourned date, especially after their personal physicians had been allowed access to them.
He said the defence counsel were not happy with the way the city of Kaduna was locked down by security agents every time the case came up.
The High Court had on December 5, 2019, ordered the State Security Services (SSS) to transfer the IMN and his wife to the Nigerian Correctional Centre, Kaduna, to allow their lawyers easy access to him.
Mr Kurada’s order followed the application by another counsel to the defendants, Haruna Magashi, on December 5, at resumed hearing of the main suit in Kaduna, eight months after the last hearing in March, 2019.
Mr Kurada had on March 24 adjourned the trial of the IMN leader indefinitely because the judge was to serve on the panel of the Presidential and National Assembly Elections Petitions Tribunal in Yobe State.
Meanwhile, Dari Bayero, lead prosecution to the Kaduna State Government, told journalists that the team was ready for the trial with all witnesses set to testify in court.