After spending over three years in custody, the leader of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and his wife, Zeenat, on Monday evening departed the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, for India for medical treatment.

This was sequel to the order of Justice Darius Khobo of the Kaduna State High Court granting El-Zakzaky and his wife leave to undergo treatment at an Indian hospital of their choice.

El-Zakzaky, and his wife, had last week turned down the Federal Government’s offer of a private jet for their Indian medical trip which they embarked upon on Monday, The PUNCH learnt.

It was gathered from top sources, who were aware of the development but would not want to be quoted because they did not have the authority to speak on the matter, that the couple insisted that they would prefer a commercial flight.

One of the sources said, “They told the government officials that they requested the court to permit them to travel to India to treat themselves at their personal cost, which they said included the cost of the flight.

“The couple, in turning down the offer, said it would be a departure from the court’s ruling if they accepted to travel on a government’s sponsored trip.”

It was learnt that they flew to India on an Emirates plane on Monday.

The IMN Spokesman, Ibrahim Musa, confirmed the development to one of our correspondents on the telephone.

He stated, “The Sheikh has departed Abuja airport with his wife for their trip to India. They went on an Emirates Airline flight which took off around 7pm. They were accompanied by the DSS operatives and a few family members.”

The Punch

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