BLASPHEMY: GANDUJE EXPRESSES READINESS TO SIGN DEATH WARRANT
Kano State Governor, Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, has expressed support to the death sentence judgement over blasphemy on a 22-year old Aminu Yahaya Sharif, by a Judge of Kano Upper Shari’ah Court, Aliyu Kani.
Ganduje expressed readiness to sign the death sentenceThursday after a special meeting with stakeholders on the issue at the Government House.
He commended all those who participated at the special meeting that was held at Africa House, Government House, Kano.
The judgement was based on Section 382 (b) of Kano Shari’ah Penal Code of 2000.
”What happened is so important to the state and to the security of the state and the nation in general. What the Court did is absolutely right. And we support it completely. Such kind of irresponsible act, if not because of the state power, nobody could know what would happen in the future.’’
“The man who did that, confessed to be a follower of a particular Islamic Sect. But the adherents of those Sect rejected him right away. So we need to understand the importance of this judgement. We are lucky that scholars maintained that it wasn’t a case for a particular Sect, but rather of one who just decided to derail.”
The Governor said the state government has accepted the death sentence verdict and the rule of law surrounding the case. “I will not waste time in signing the warrant for the execution of the man who blasphemed our Holy Prophet of Islam.’’
He also commended how the Court handled the case and all sections of the society for not fomenting trouble when the case was in the court, adding that, “Our eyes are there following everything bit by bit. We thank Almighty Allah that the court sitting went on successfully.”
“Lawyers just told us that the case could go up to Supreme Court. So if that happens, I will not waste time in approving the verdict right away. And the second issue is, if the victim did not take up the case to appellate courts, I will not waste time to give the approval for the execution. I will not take more than few minutes to accept the verdict.’’
Governor Ganduje’s announcement was in the presence of the Commissioner of Police, Director Department of State Service (DSS), Representative of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Eze Ndigbo of Kano Chief Boniface Ibekwe, Representatives of Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Representatives of Muslim Lawyers Association of Nigeria (MULAN), Comptroller of Kano Correctional Centre, among others.
Representatives of Islamic scholars addressed the gathering on why the judgement should be accepted and executed.
The Chairman of the Council of Imams of Sheikh Muhammad Nasir Adam, Leader of Izalatul Bid’ah Wa’iqamatus Sunnah, Prof Abdullahi Saleh, Malam Usman Yusuf Makwarari and others, gave reasons why the judgement should be executed.
Professor Ahmad Murtala from Bayero University, Kano, lend his voice to all those scholars who supported the execution of the convict. He hinted that accepting the judgement would strengthen courts in the state and would also mean respecting Kano people and their religious rights.
MULAN Chairman, Kano State Branch, Barrister Muhammad Sani Garba, revealed that the association would stand very firm behind the Governor’s stand on approving the judgement, adding that even if the case goes to Supreme Court, nothing could change.
NBA Chairman, Kano State Branch Barrister Aminu Sani Gadanya, said as an association, they collectively accepted the verdict of the Court, “Looking at the legal provisions followed by the Court, we are totally in support of the judgement.”
Comptroller Nigeria Correctional Centre, Kano, reminded all about other procedures to be followed before the judgement could be executed finally, noting that, “the law gives the convict the right to take the matter to the High Court to Court of Appeal up to Supreme Court.”
Other people who spoke at the meeting included the state Commissioner of Religious Affairs. The Imam of Triumph Friday Mosque, Malam Lawan Abubakar who reminded how people should try their best in discharging their individual responsibilities on the matter.