The Media Forum of Nigeria’s major Shiite group, IMN, has criticised Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State for banning the activities of the movement in the state.
In a statement issued to journalists on Sunday in Abuja, Ibrahim Musa, President of the Forum, accused Mr. Lalong of imitating Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State in banning the activities of the movement without recourse to law.
“It is perplexing that the premise upon which Plateau State governor has placed his own ban was simply because of the ban in Kaduna State.
“No recourse to the dictates of the law, reason or logic.
“He is merely copying Kaduna State without basis. This is awkward to say the least,” Mr. Musa said.
He noted that the ban on the activities of the movement in Plateau, like in Kaduna State, strips the citizens of the two states of their inalienable rights to practice their faith without molestation.
“We believe Governor Lalong is fully aware of this and his limitation.”
Mr. Musa said Plateau is the least state expected to copy Kaduna State in the infringement of the rights of its citizens.
He said: “of all the myriad of crises bedevilling the state, IMN has never been implicated in any.
“It therefore beats imagination why the state would target IMN for persecution.
“Governor Lalong only seems to be playing to the gallery in making this ill-advised illegal and illogical move.”
Mr. Musa appealed to the governor to rescind his decision to act like his counterpart in Kaduna State on matters concerning IMN.
“We believe he (Lalong) should stand for justice, fairness and obedience to the rule of law.
“We call on him to exercise his powers in ordering for the release of members of IMN in detention immediately, pay compensation to IMN members who lost properties in the state-sponsored terror attacks on IMN in his state.
“We also expect him to prosecute those soldiers and thugs involved in the carnage during Ashura commemoration anniversary in Jos,” Mr. Musa said.