'I'm alive' - Shi'ites leader El-Zakzaky speaks from detention

The leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria Sheik Ibrahim El-Zakzaky has assured Nigerians he is alive an well

He also noted that contrary to reports, the Shiite leader was not in prison, the Department of State Services or police custody but was rather in protective custody with his family.

PRNigeria provided a transcript from the one-minute, 20-second interaction between Sheikh ElZakzaky with journalists at a Safe Facility in Abuja.

He walked towards the journalist in a white flowing gown with turban.

"You know that we have been protesting and demonstrating for the past five days, so that Sheikh would be allowed to go for medical treatment overseas".

Journalist: How are you feeling now?

Zakzaky's wife is said to have been in a "far worse" state, with bullets from the attack in December 2015 still lodged in her body.

Journalist: Do you have anything to add.

He spoke against the backdrop of the news that he had died in detention.

But the DSS and his lawyer, Femi Falana both dispelled the stories, and affirmed that he is still alive.

The cleric and his wife sustained gunshot wounds during their arrests.

Speaking on the issue, the Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Lai Muhammad stated earlier that Mr El-Zakzaky was still being held on the grounds of national security. "But he is very sick". He has developed stroke in detention.

At least 350 Shia members were killed in the onslaught which has elicited criticisms of the army by human rights groups, including Amnesty International.

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