Shiite IMN similar to Boko Haram, Biafra agitation “unacceptable,” Nigerian govt says

IMN protesters

The Nigerian government has formally declared the Shiite Islamic Movement of Nigeria, IMN, a security threat and compared it to the Boko Haram whose insurgency has caused the death of about 100,000 people since 2009.

The government stated this in its formal rejection of the 2015/2016 annual report of Amnesty International, AI, which accused the country’s security and military forces of “extreme” human rights violations and brutal response to security concerns, such as the Biafra agitation, Boko Haram insurgency and Shiites’ movement.

The Nigerian military had earlier rejected the report.

In the AI report published in February, the global rights watchdog accused Nigeria of unlawful killings, detention and inhumane treatment of pro-Biafra campaigners, civilians in the north-east and members of the IMN, including its leader, Ibrahim El-Zakzaky, as well as clampdown on freedom of speech.

But in a statement shared at the weekend, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs questioned the credibility of the AI report and insisted both IMN and pro-Biafra activists were national security threats, and accusing the former of terrorism.

“The Ministry wishes to point out that the case of Mr. El-Zakzaky, which Amnesty International pronounced on, is a high and national security issue.

“The activities of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) and the El-Zakzaky movement in particular are reminiscent of Boko Haram which has become a menace and security concern not only to the Nigeria, but also the Lake Chad Basin region and the entire world. The activities of the El-Zakzaky movement is one that cannot be tolerated by any progressive democratic government.”

The ministry noted that the government had appealed the December 2016 court ruling that Mr. El-Zakzaky be released unconditionally.

The IMN leader and his wife have been in detention without trial since December 2015 when the military killed hundreds of his followers for denying the Army chief, Tukur Buratai, right of way in Zaria, Kaduna State.

While no solider is being prosecuted for killing or ordering the killing of the hundreds of Shiites, the Kaduna State government has since proscribed the IMN.

President Muhammadu Buhari and the federal government have always claimed their inaction on the Shiite killings was because the Kaduna State government was investigating the matter.

While the Kaduna government and now the federal government have accused the Shiite group of carrying out violent actions and being an ‘insurgent’ group, the IMN have accused top Kaduna and federal government officials of pursuing a Sunni-led clampdown on them.

On the Amnesty report on the Biafran agitation, the foreign ministry said “the agitation for a sovereign State of Biafra is unacceptable and detrimental to the peace, unity, stability and development of the Nigerian state.

“The scenario captured and the report itself lacked conformity to both local and international best standards on evidence gathering,” said the ministry.

In its clampdown on Biafran agitators, a leader of the pro-Biafra IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu, has remained in detention and is being tried for treason by the government.

Nonetheless, the government expressed commitment to safeguarding citizens’ rights to freedom of expression and association, and that security personnel found to have flouted rules of engagement would be appropriately dealt with.


Now available on

  Premium Times Android mobile applicationPremium Times iOS mobile applicationPremium Times blackberry mobile applicationPremium Times windows mobile application

TEXT AD:"Warning to Men, These 3 Foods is Slowly Killing Your Erection". Click Here to Know Them

All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.

  • Steve

    U forgot Fulani Herdsmen

    • Moweta Tony

      For them, d Nigeria govt.; fulani herdsmen re their brothers n cant be terrorist

    • Epsilon_Delta

      When buhari is their grand patron?

  • Gary

    Like the Hebrews in the court of the Babylonian king, this is the poisoned chalice handed to Yemi Osinbajo to drink.
    The Shiites did not form Boko Haram, the Shiites are not behind the current genocide against the peoples of the Southern Kaduna and the Middle Belt. The Shiites are not herding cattle carrying AK-47 rifles and terrorizing farming communities across Nigeria. The Shiites are not beheading Christians in the North. The worst they have done is hold religious processions and occasionally cause a public nuisance by blacks cling traffic. Please fellow countrymen, compare their infractions to those of the ruling Sunnis who are now used government might to smear and crush a religious minority they viscerally hate.

    We won’t even bother to argue about the constitutionality of the agitation for Biafra and the brutal response that is still ongoing.

    This is the Nigeria and security apparatus that Yemi Osinbajo now has to run in the absence of the wicked ruler who put them in place.
    May God help him to end the persecution of innocent people.

    • Gbola

      A group that placed a call to Iran when their Leader was arrested — To the extent that Iran had the audacity and temerity to be Threatnimg us (Nigeria) to release Zakazy ???

      A month or so before this, with the help (intelligence) from The U.S, a container-load of Guns and Ammunitions was intercepted at our ports.

      And you’re here saying what ??
      Are you smoking Crack ??

      Abeg… abeg…. Abeg !!
      Make we hear word.

  • burning spear

    ‘Very sad that Yomi Osibanjo has to because of lack of foresight and personal integrity—–descended to this gutter level for the Sultan of Sokoto and the Fulani cowhands–in charge of his government —to enable him lie to the global community-via the MoFA——————AGAIN–Is Osibanjo now saying the Sunni Jihadist as represented by Boko haram —are the only recognized religious sect group in the Fulani North—ati Nigeria–? Aware the Shiite religious group have been with us in Nigeria—-for as long as we can remember—–Long before 1914—when Lord Lugard arrived the shores of Nigeria—So what is Lawyer Osibanjo really saying here—–?———————I have often warned Nigerians to note that Osibanjo a Law Prof——and the Apes in APC—- will become worse than Adolf Hitler ati Buhari put together———–as time goes on-with these types of demonic pronouncements—-against freedom of worship——what a shame–what a country–

  • Current

    What an unintelligent assessment report that lacks credibility. This is what you get when appointments are based on flawed quota system.

  • Omooba

    What constitutes national security threat must be clearly defined and well-spelt out without any ambiguity. For instance is quest for power generation by a federal constituent/geopolitical zone to meet dire shortage where the central government has failed woefully one? What about Railway provision? We are just not sincere with ourselves as a country.

    • Powerlessconscious

      Is biafraud agitation same as your definition above?

  • Abdulmojeed Nojeemdeen

    See wailers. No responsible government will sit by,like jonothing,and allow a group of people hold the whole country to Ransome. The likes of tompolo under the disguise of militancy, the kanu with his criminal gangs,ipob,camouflaging as freedom fighters, the zombies who will die for nothing defending their Shiite ideology,an effective weapon to toppling a legitimate government. Amnesty,we know your antics,make unnecessary noises,make a popular government unpopular,cause chaos,and then keep criminally silent. You caused in Libya,Iraq,Syria,Afghanistan,. Amnesty has shown it’s consistence in causing havoc world over. Unfortunately for the amnesty,there are more intellectuals at the helm of the affairs. Propaganda has been their tools,we now have a government that can deploy the same propaganda tools.

    • Webber

      This Countries you mentioned are Muslim countries and mostly populated by Terrorists.. Nigeria is a Terrorist Nation but we Biafrans dont want Terrorists on our land.. Unity is not by force.. I love Tompolo because he is defending his people.. Same goes with IPOB.. Biafra a land filled with milk and Honey.. Biafra or death

      • Gbola

        Abeg mechionu right dia.

        Isn’t Alahaji Dokubo Didirin Apari a Muslim ??
        Is he also a Terrorist ??


    • Gary

      Interesting that all the countries on your list have one thing in common: they are hotbeds of Sunni Islamic terrorism.

      So it’s no surprise that Nigeria is now part of the unenviable list as its home to two of the world’s deadliest terrorist groups: Boko Haram and Fulani herdsmen militia.
      The bureaucrats at the Foreign Ministry have a job to do but they cannot erase the reality of the deaths and carnage of Sunni Jihadists in Nigeria. They should be pitied for having to justify mass murder as part of earning their daily bread.

      • Abdulmojeed Nojeemdeen

        I can see the usual Igbo idiocy in your vituperation. I don’t have the time to waste with a wasted generation of a God forsaken people with no leadership. Ptueww spit.

  • Bashir

    “Unacceptable” is never an answer to agitation for self governance. Why not referendum? Similarly, Shiah didn’t kill 300+ and secretly burry them in a mass grave. If you have anything Against them is expected that u prosecute, but not to kill extra judicially.

    • Rommel

      When you say referendum,who will pay for it and how will it be conducted, who and who will be polled?

      • Otile

        You are a disgrace to yourself and your family. Here is a grown up man out of inferiority complex assumed the name of a white mass murderer. Are you proud of yourself? No wonder you see Mohamed, the Islamic mass murderer as your model. Pathetic.

        • Powerlessconscious

          Shitte are terrorist. That must be destroyed.

      • Gbola

        It is he who demands referendum that must pay for it.
        That’s why I’ve asked them to get their state Governor and commisioners to make provisions for it in their state budget.

        Abi does it make sense for Lagos state’s tax payers money to be spent on the referendum to be conducted in the SE ??

        Nor mind dem.

  • dami

    No Nigerian government has ever accepted self determination agitations and I’m not surprised that it has been rejected here…the modus of the arguement is also fallacious – cos they / their candidate lost an election?
    Also why aren’t they going thru their reps / senators / governors? (Tho its obvious these reps are feeding fat off the nation as it is..)
    At our places of work if you have a problem do you bypass your immediate manager / his manager / HR and approach the CEO?
    Let them seek it properly, if at all…get their reps to move motions at the state and federal level…involve their senators, after all they elected them….the violent struggle methods they are executing will never be accepted by any government anywhere in the world.

    • Otile

      Where on earth have you heard of a monarch make a motion for his own dethronement? Commonsense man, commonsense.

      • dami

        So therefore the agitation towards the FG that ignores their own reps that they elected lacks merit…meanwhile monarchs are not elected – so you too are indulging in this fallacious arguement…starting with you it seems common sense is not really common

        • Otile

          Quickly drop that your “So therefore” English so that you can make sense.

          • dami

            Boot and re-boot your brain…so that you can understand what I’m saying.

          • Gbola

            I don’t think Rebooting can help his “grey matter”.
            Reformatting AND Defragmenting MIGHT help.

          • Powerlessconscious

            Hahahahahahahahahah. That is exactly what fit a stubborn brain.

    • Oluwabawayikpada

      Guy you are funny, we should not allow our hatred or love for some and others to becloud our senses of reasons. We are in this country together and have applauded NLC and Tinubus and co when they staged the infamous’occupy Nigeria protest’ what about the Bring our girls girls protest. We knew that the protesters have senators, and reps representing them yet we did applaud them.we had of recent those protesting in support of buhari and against him.these protesters have their representatives as you said,yet they are allowed to protest by security forces.
      The holy books frowns against measuring with unequal scales, honestly buhari is the worst despotic leader to ever come to Nigeria.
      Your statements that the Biafra agitators started agitating because their ‘candidate lost an election ‘ ,is both satanic and fallacious, it is a lie taking too far and only men and women conceived and born with the venom of hate and lying in their DNA can post such a lie.
      It is on record that Massob led by uwazurike the chief biafran agitator started in 1999 ,in 2003 they called for a nationwide sit at home protest which took obasanjo government by surprise. In 2006 ,they inflicted the worst injury on the ibos since the end of the civil war ,when they frustrated the census exercises in the south east and thereby making ibos appear the least populated zone in Nigeria. IPOB which was an offshoot of massob came into existence some times in 2012 and by 2013 radio Biafra operated by kanu has become a rallying point to biafra agitators. It is on record that solidarity marches by these guys started well during obj who was ibos candidate and continued through Jonathan and became worst when buhari arrested the ipob leader.
      I have taken time to respond to you because I hate men who wilfully post lies to distort national narratives and cunning craftily hide their hatred against other people.

      • dami

        bro you’re the funny one…you stylishly addressed the right to protest but left out that it does not include the right to bear arms illegally, smuggle in arms and ammunition, smuggle in radio equipment and use same to broadcast threats to overthrow a democratically elected government – no government in the world will accept this and the NLC’s and Tinubu’s that protested did not go to this extreme.
        Secondly the agitation for Biafra exploded once Buhari was sworn in – so yes they have been agitating but not as fierce as this in previous administrations – you conveniently forgot to mention that; and the catalyst was that their brother and neighbor lost an election…at the same time pipeline vandalization increased (tho as at today it has reduced)
        so when you decide to go back into time to quote history remember that we were all here when it happened and can quote as well.

        omitting verifiable facts is the same as lying by omission – if you don’t see it others see it.

    • Gbola


      End Of Discussion !!

  • Rommel

    FG should declare all ethnic agitations to be insurgency and treated as such,terrorism comes in different forms,today as we speak,all Igbo that hold contrary views to those in support of BIAFRA are being terrorized,does that not qualify BIAFRA agitators as terrorists?

    • Otile

      You sound like a lunatic. For your own good seek urgent psychiatric help.

    • emmanuel

      …and a morally deranged former ex-CBN governor known for his escapades @Room 23 of Raddison Blu hotel Ikoyi became King of his follow follow people…months later, and he soon assumed a status of a beacon of rectitude…and started to lay down morals that his people must now follow…occasionally he advises the Nigerian Govt…and Nigerians seem to have forgotten that were it in Europe Mr Sanusi would be in jail for at least 5 yrs.

      Dominique Strauss Khan (Former IMF chief) committed same offense as Sanusi when he wrested an African Lady in a Ney York Hotel. It ended his presidential ambition if France. Were he a Nigerian, a Sanusi, he would probably be the King of Naples or Nice. So Biafra is a terrorist organisation while Fulani Herdsmen are a friendly organization. See how stoooooooooopid you are?


      Biafra issue is beyond the present group of killers in government, will Buhari kill how many ?

  • Maduka Nnorom

    The statement by Nigerian government is provocative and it is in no doubt irresponsibly naive to assert that Biafran agitation is “unacceptable”. Whatever that means only they can interpret. In any case, self determination of a people is never consensual relative to those from whom the subject seeks extrication. It must also be noted that it is criminal to speak of Biafran Nation in the same light as the Islamist terrorist Shiite Muslim group herein referred to as the so called ‘Islamic Movement of Nigeria’. Juxtaposing Biafra with any Islamist sect in whatever circumstances is pure mischief. Biafra is neither a concept nor some whimsical imagination of some deranged or articulate religious fanatics. Biafra is the life, culture and tradition of a people in the Bight of Biafra – a region occupied by the Igbos and the homogeneous tribes of the littoral Niger Delta. It is natural and personal to those who live in it and to view it otherwise is pure mischief doomed to fail.

  • Otile

    Biafran agitation is unacceptable to their livelihood for obvious reasons.

  • John.

    Ok o. We hear.
    Are u tired of loosing money to non-paying platforms that come today n crash 2moro. Then follow me to this group of ultimate cyclers.Ultimate cycler is reliable,trusted n tested. U register 2day n get paid 50k within 2-7 working days. Join dis fastest-paying team in Nigeria.Wasap 08063667191

  • Mentus

    Poor Osinbanjo. He is between a rock and a hard place when it comes to issues like this when he has to stand by what ‘Presidency’ (whatever that word means) says even when he does entirely agree with it.
    That is why the bible says ‘do not be unequally yokes with an unbeliever’
    Even though he knows that Fulani herdsmen are only next in rank to the deadly Boko Haram he has to ignore the reference to them for fear of offending his master and the entire Fulani cabals. What has the Shiites or IPOB done in Nigeria for them to be labelled terrorists except exercise their right to March which by the way Buhari supporters did last month without any of them being arrested.
    All I can say to all the security agents; the army, the police, the sss who commit atrocities under the umbrella of this Sunni government, they will individually be held accountable before God for what they did. The bible says ‘Though hand join in hand, the sinner shall not go unpunished.


    It shows you that we have a deranged Govt in Nigeria that has no direction and has no idea what Democracy is all about. The Biafra agitators have every right to demonstrate. The least we can do is for the Govt meet with them and find common ground. The IMN has also demonstrated their non violent nature. The Nigerian Govt has killed 6 children of ElZakhzakhy and over a thousand of his followers and continue to face provocation from security agents daily but have not killed a single soul and have not attacked anyone in retaliation. The shameless Nigerian Govt now wants to compare them with Boko Haram a Saudi-inspired group with offshoot from Izala a group that those around Buhari belong to.

    • LionHeart

      Abubakar you don’t sound like a Northerner but I applaud you for being very transparent in what you wrote. The Northern Nigeria needs more open minded Muslims like you.

    • Senator D

      100% correct!


    The issue here is not in classifying or identifying a threat rather it is on how the so called threat was dealt with. Nigeria is a democracy governed by laws and a secular constitution. No law in Nigeria prescribes :







    The erosion of civil liberties in the past 2 years is a direct result of instructions passed on by the Presidency and the kitchen security apparatus leadership made up of mostly relatives and surrogates of Muhammadu Buhari , they are mostly of Sunni Muslim and Fulani extraction.

    • Gbola

      You speak too much grammer.
      Do your worse.

      For the Leader of a Nigerian sect to be calling the Iranian government when he was being arrested TO THE EXTENT THAT the Iranian government had the temerity, audacity and effontery to be threatening Nigeria on the releasing of Zarkazy — is all I need to hear to label this group as an external influenced TERRORIST GROUP.

      And I know that you in particular are aware that -with the help of the U.S intelligence, Nigeria intercepted a container load of Arms and ammunition that was SHIPPED FROM THIS SAME IRAN.

      You come here preaching the gospel according to Tawanda to deceive gullible followers of yours.

      Not all matters of security can be released to the Public.

      But I am very sure that this group AT THE VERY LEAST NOT ONLY HAVE EXTERNAL FOREIGN BACKERS BUT HAVE TERRORISM in their blood.
      They are Terrorists in the making.
      And Nobody can tell Nigeria to let these morons develop fully into a boko-Haram before arresting the situation.
      Pre-emptive measures have to be adopted.
      I don’t trust Iran ONE SINGLE BIT.
      And I don’t put these Fulani masquerades pass them.

      This is a group that mounted a road block and refused RIGHTS of passage to our Military. (MIKITARY OH, NOT POLICE).
      By the way, the road they blocked wasn’t just a corner-street oh.
      Just imagine some bunch of retards blocking western avenue because for whatever concocted reason you can think of.
      The Military even begged them for rights of passage BUT with such boldness, they flatly denied the use of this highway.

      All I have stated here are FACTS @Tawanda.
      We’ve both argued these points before.
      So you can’t claim to be unaware of any of the points I listed here.

      And you’re here saying what Again ??
      What ????




        What an uncivilized view from an Islamic extremist , no law in Nigeria prescribes summary extra-judicial mass execution for unarmed civilians who block roads.

        • Gbola


          I see that as usual, you mischieviously and deceitfully didn’t REFUTE or reference any of the facts I stated especially as relating to the Iranian link.


          Keep shouting at the top of your esophagus.
          It’s just what Wailers and E-rats do.
          I am in total support of NOT JUST MY Country (Nigeria) BUT our Military as well.

          All Hail Nigeria !!!!
          The country where enemies of Progress abound.
          God Bless Nigeria (My Country, My sweet Home).


            I am no comedian, I dwell on the law and constitution vis a vis the rights of Nigerians, I will leave the comedy part to you.

          • Gbola

            Address issues.
            Stop running away from issues.
            ALWAYS learn to state the bitter Truth regardless of how it comes across or who is impacted.

            It’s the honest thing to do.

            You’re aware of the Iranian angle here, weve both discussed these thoroughly when the news broke out in the past but for your senseless and selfish agenda, you tactfully, mischievously and deceitfully completely omitted it.

            What a shame !!

          • staaaaaaaaaaa

            that is how Ibos do. they only use truth when it is convenient for them., forgetting it is universal. The Jonathan they make so much noise about never got their support to be president during turaya days. and I don’t know any rational human being who has seen these IMN in action that will call them peaceful. It takes only a mean group to insist on disallowing decorated officers of any armed forces from making use of the public road. It means if they have armunition, they would reign in impunity. I totally support their disbandment.

        • Powerlessconscious

          Infact. You must be a terrorist. I suspect you.


            You have not contributed sensibly to this topic ,

  • Decimator

    There can just be no valuable argument for Tyranny.


  • Oluwabawayikpada

    When a leader allowed hatred,uncontrollable anger,malice,envy,religious, clannish and ethnic bigotry to overwhelm him ,he becomes useless, a curse,a destroyer and a big impediment to the progress, prosperity, unity and well being of the nation and the citizens he is leading.
    Buhari is like a curse and a terrible plaque against Nigerian nation and her people.
    No wonder God Almighty have given him the grace to stay far away from Nigeria to rest in peace so that this nation may recover from the wickedness of an old man who refused to deploy the advantage of his old age and position to uplift his nation but rather choose the inglorious path of destroying a nation that have so much helped him.
    What a shame.very very unfortunate.

    • staaaaaaaaaaa

      omo Ibo, go back home to Biafra, and leave Nigeria for us. stop hiding here. Just pack out of Nigeria, and leave our east for us. any problem there?

  • Oluwabawayikpada

    It is saddening listening and watching this integrity deficient and morally bankrupt ,haughty, hate ,tribal, ethnic and religious bigoted buhari fumble and tumble with the future, well being and unity of Nigeria.
    Buhari have dealt very maliciously against the unity, peace,prosperity and greatness of Nigerian nation, buhari have reversed the little gains made by Nigerian leaders and degraded Nigerian nation to 20 years back.
    This is the worst thing that can happen to any nation or people, having an old man at the helm of her affairs plaqued and overwhelmed with childish and hate bigoted mentalities.
    Let us place it on record that Biafra agitation resurged in 1999 and have passed through 3 Presidents of Nigeria without any harm whatsoever against Nigeria nation because the agitators have chosen a non violence mode of agitation. They have been marching with their flags ,drums and placards dancing and singing on the roads since year 2000 and their activities have never been a hindrance to Nigeria in any way.
    Why should buhari now because of hatred ,religious ,partisan and ethnic bigotry turn these peaceful protesters to violent protesters.
    Nigerian nation can not openly disclose without being ashamed ,the quantum of resources ,men and material lost and wasted on her fight against boko haram,why is buhari opening another front to continue wasting resources ,men and materials that would be better used for the advancement of Nigerian nation and her citizens. Between Biafra agitators and the murderous Fulani herdsmen whom buhari have been pampering and negotiating with Nigerian resources, even going beyond Nigerian borders to pay them ransoms, which of them is more of a threat Nigeria and her citizens.
    Buhari is a big hypocrite.
    May God continue to grant to buhari more days to rest in London so that this nation can be thoroughly healed and delivered from buharis evil plaques and satanic afflictions.

    • Powerlessconscious

      Your education is totally a waste. I shake my head for your brain. PDP education has really truncated you’d thinking.

  • Aminu Baba

    Kudos to both Federal and Kaduna state governments on their firm stand against subversive groups. Amnesty have clearly misfired on the issue of Shiites. These people actually started Boko Haram way back in 1979. The issue of IPOB became worsened because their are being led by Ann illiterate international miscreant who doesn’t know how to decently go about the struggle for self actualisation and independence of his Igbo tribe. He is an opportunist who wants to reap where Ralph Iwazurike and Ken Saro Wiwa saw. The sooner his case is dealt with and put away behind bars the better for us all. Don’t mind Pat Utomi and Soludo, they are just politicking in preparation for 2019

  • JasV

    Once bitten twice shy. Give no room whatsoever for demons like boko haram, fraudulent imposters such as biafraud IPBs (even calling themselves Jews) and indeed scAvengers who kill themselves and destroy their own environment while in their ogogoronic, moronic brains they think they are destroying others. WELL DONE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OF NIGERIA. WELL DONE OUR MILITARY BOYS & GIRLS.

  • Powerlessconscious

    On the Amnesty report on the Biafran agitation, the foreign ministry said “the agitation for a sovereign State of Biafra is unacceptable and detrimental to the peace, unity, stability and development of the Nigerian state.
    Biafraud will be very angry.

    • Really

      Just as the hale, healthy and chatty absentee president of Tyranny will be very happy.

      • Powerlessconscious

        You mean “one of the finest president in the world”?

        • Really

          All of the above.

          Sai Baba

  • Onyeokwe

    Nigeria is an evil and disgusting Zoo. …Yeye country. Tufiakwa!

  • D a n g o t e-C e m e n t