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Buhari studying reports on Army/Shiites’ clash, says Presidency


Garba Shehu

Garba Shehu

President Muhammadu Buhari has assured international and local human rights groups of appropriate response over the report of the Judicial Inquiry into the clashes between soldiers and members in Zaria Kaduna State in December last year, he Presidency has said.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu in a statement in Abuja yesterday said the president is studying the details of the report before announcing in due course, an appropriate response.

The latest development is a sharp contrast to Shehu’s position last week that President Buhari had no hand in the outcome of the report, noting that it was strictly a Kaduna State government’s affair.

Shehu was apparently reacting to the allegations by the Shiites members that the President was blocking the release of their leader, Sheik Ibrahim El-Zakzaky who has been held in detention since December last year.

The presidential spokesman restated that Buhari’s commitment to human rights remains unchanged because it is a cardinal component of the democratic order.

It would be recalled that when the clashes occurred in December, Buhari had told the nation during a Media Chat that he was awaiting the outcome of the report of inquiry into the incident before making appropriate response.
According to him: “The present administration believes in due process and the rule of law; therefore any response to the report would follow this principle. The Federal Government will continue to act in the larger interest of the public to prevent such violent incidents.”

Shehu had on Thursday absolved Buhari of any complicity in El-Zazaky’s continued detention, saying, the matter had nothing to do with the President.

According to Shehu: “Does it really make any sense to believe that the President is blocking the release of their leader when the President has, as a matter of policy refused to get involved in it?

“Let them take their case to Kaduna State government,” he declared.

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