Kogi University lecturer charged for terrorism

The lecturer denied any link to the Boko Haram sect.

A Kogi State University lecturer, Muhammad Nazeef, was on Monday charged to court by the Department of State Security Service, SSS, over alleged links with terrorists.

Mr. Nazeef was arraigned with two others, Salami Abdullahi and Umar Musa. They are alleged to be leaders of a Boko Haram cell in Kogi State.

Mr. Nazeef, a lecturer in the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies of the university, was earlier paraded alongside four others by the State Security Services, SSS, at its headquarters in Abuja on November 20, 2013.

On January 13, the SSS had informed the court that it had no evidence against three of the suspects: Mustapha Yusuf, Ismaila Abdulazeez, and Ibrahim Hayafu. They were discharged by the court while the SSS applied for a leave from the court to further detain Mr. Nazeef and Umar Musa until their arraignment, a request the judge approved.

On Monday, Mr. Nazeef and the two others denied having any links with the dreaded sect and also pleaded not guilty to an eight-count charge leveled against them by the SSS on Monday.

The presiding judge, Gabriel Kolawole, however ordered that the Messrs Nazeef, Abdullahi, and Musa be remanded in Kuje Prison.

Mr. Kolawole also fixed February 10 for hearing of a bail application while prosecution by the SSS will start on March 18.

Mr. Nazeef on the day of the parade said he believed he was being set up by Boko Haram following his consistent preaching against the sect’s activities. His daughter, Summayya Muhammad, also stated that her father had always condemned the Boko Haram’s activities and that tapes of his messages can prove that.

According to a report by the Vanguard Newspapers, in a statement signed by its Vice Chancellor, the Kogi University, Hassan Isah, denied that the institution knew about the personal life of the lecturer.

“The Governing council and the management therefore condemned and dissociated themselves from all criminality and terrorism in whatever shape or form, where ever and whenever it exist.

“In view of the negative interpretation and implication for our hard-earned reputation, and the damaging impression on unsuspected members of the public, the institution dissociates itself from all criminal and criminal activities including those of the dreaded Boko Haram sect,” Mr. Isah said.

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