Iyobosa Uwugiaren in Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari has intervened in the case of a young Nigerian girl, Miss Zainab Aliyu, who was recently arrested in Saudi Arabia for alleged drug offence, the presidency revealed yesterday.
A statement by a presidential aide, Mrs. Abike Dabirir-Erewa, in Abuja, said that the president had directed the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, to immediately act on the case of Zainab, the student, who was incriminated in drug- related matters, and detained by the Saudi Arabia authorities.
“President Muhammadu Buhari gave the directive immediately the matter was brought to his attention about two weeks ago. My office has been working with the AGF as well as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in that regard,” Dabiri-Erewa revealed.
The presidential aide assured that progress was being made in Zainab’s case, along with two others in similar circumstances in Saudi Arabia.
Dabiri Erewa said that Zainab, though detained, has not been put on trial by the Saudi Arabia government.
She noted that since those who implicated her had been arrested, a strong legal case is being made to the Saudi authorities
Mr. Habib Aliyu, the father of the alleged drug courier, Zainab, had appealed to the federal government of Nigeria, the Saudi authorities and the international community, as well as well-meaning individuals to intervene in her daughter’s case and save the “innocent’’ lady from being executed wrongly.
Aliyu, a Kano-based senior editor, who is not happy that his daughter is cooling off in a Saudi Prison, despite the recent discovery that she was framed up by some drug cartel, explained that the allegations of Zainab entering the country with Tramadol, was absolute falsehood as recent events and arrests have confirmed the girl’s innocence.
Zainab, a student of Maitama Sule University, Kano, had travelled from Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA) in company of her mother, Mrs. Maryam Aliyu, and sister, Hajara Aliyu.
She was later arrested over allegations that a luggage, bearing her name tag, contained the unlawful substance.
Zainab who was accused of entering Saudi Arabia with an illegal dosage of Tramadol was later discovered to be a victim of a cartel that specialises in keeping hard drugs in travellers’ bags, some of whom are already in the custody of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).