Nigerians have taken to social media to protest the illegal detention of Zainab Aliyu, a student detained in Saudi Arabia for drug trafficking.
Zainab, a student of Maitama Sule University, Kano, was arrested after a banned drug, tramadol, was found in her bag. She claimed it was planted in her luggage by unknown persons.
The student had travelled from Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport in company with her mother, Mrs. Maryam Aliyu, and sister, Hajara Aliyu, but she was arrested over allegations that a bag 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 specialised in keeping hard drugs in travellers’ bags, some of whom were already in the custody of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency.
The father of the alleged drug courier, Habib Aliyu, had appealed to the Federal Government, the Saudi authorities and the international community as well as well-meaning individuals to intervene in her daughter’s case and save her from being executed unjustly.
Habibu had expressed outrage over the continued detention of his daughter despite the discovery that she was framed by some drug cartel.
He explained that the allegations of Zainab entering the country with Tramadol, was absolute falsehood “as recent events and arrests have confirmed her innocence.”
Reacting on Twitter, some Nigerians called on Saudi Arabian authorities to release her unconditionally.
Others berated the federal government for allowing Nigerians to be treated badly in foreign countries while condemned the death penalty leveled against her.
Below are some of the reaction as captured by Concise News:
President Buhari need to do something urgently, we as Nigerians are crying for the whole world, especially the countries that are good friends of Saudi Arabia, to help us in the release of this innocent girl #FreeZainab
— Ahmadkaraye (@abclairs) April 29, 2019
Since those who framed Zainab have been arrested, why are the Saudi authorities still keeping Zainab behind bars? #FreeZainab
— Kamal Abubakar (@KamalAbubakar3) April 29, 2019
it's obviously that Zainab Aliyu's case is very heart-touching. Nigerians from different angle are showing very much concern.
— 🇳🇬Abdullahi A Misilli (@Abdallahmisilli) April 29, 2019
lots of innocent Nigerians r in same prison. If we seek justice, let’s lead by example n be unselfish. Because it’s a northerner now ayt? If it’s an ibo man now,all of U wld hv been throwing out condemnations. Nigeria! A house divided amongst itself can never stand. #FreeZainab
— Henry Aaron (@HenryAa19980911) April 29, 2019
Saudi Arabian authorities must free Zainab Habibu Aliyu. Her ordeal shows everything wrong with death penalty. Let us raise our voices, until Zainab is free. No one knows who can be the next victim of such injustice. #FreeZainab #Nigeria #ZainabIsInnocent pic.twitter.com/D6NpPwv6gS
— Amnesty Int. Nigeria (@AmnestyNigeria) April 29, 2019
Let us fight for the release of all innocent Nigerians held in prison in Saudi Arabia. Our government can do better. The life of every Nigerian matters and not just that of Zainab only. Saudi Arabia should not be allowed to establish a refinery in Nigeria. #FreeZainab
— L (@Leely_2014) April 29, 2019
— OrilePikin😎 (@OrileBoy) April 29, 2019
There will be peaceful protest tomorrow by the Students of Yusuf Maitama Sule University to call the attention of Nigerian Government and the Saudi Consulate over the detention of Zainab Habib Aliyu for alleged drug trafficking. #FreeZainab#ReleaseZainab#ZainabIsinocent pic.twitter.com/qDx0uiWVEW
— Sir Fred (@fedrickidris) April 29, 2019
— Future President 🇳🇬 (@Yusufabdallahh) April 29, 2019
Instead of Buhari to travel to Saudi and save this one precious soul. He is hiding in London under disguise of private visit #FreeZainab
— Sen Tunesh Olumide🌍 (@S_Tunesh) April 29, 2019
Saudi Arabia shouldn't be trusted at all. A country that their leaders can kill a journalist shouldn't be allowed to give people death penalty without Buhari doing something. Its becoming too much and they should be checked. #FreeZainab
— Standard Presenter 👌 (@ItsOladeni) April 29, 2019
It's very hard for our Hausa Ladies to be involved in drug trafficking, the moment I saw Zainab's news, I knew something was skeptical about the whole issue.
Alhamdulillah Zainab has bn vindicated.
May Allah save her and others.#FreeZainab #freezainabaliyu
— Engr. Yasir Arafat Jubril (@oil_shaeikh) April 29, 2019
— Junexky (@MahrufOdunare) April 29, 2019