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Nigeria: Sharia court reportedly sentences 9 people to death for alleged blasphemy

This statement was originally published on mediarightsagenda.net on 29 June 2015.

On June 25, 2015, a Sharia court of appeal in Rijiyar Lemo, in Kano State, Northwest Nigeria, reportedly sentenced nine persons – including one woman – to death, for alleged blasphemy against Prophet Mohammed.

The court convicted Abdul-Inyas, Hajiya Mairo (the woman), and seven others and sentenced them to death for the offence they allegedly committed early June 2015.

The information about their conviction and sentence was disclosed to the public through a statement signed by an official of the court named Nasiru, which said the nine persons were found guilty under Sections 110 and 382b of the Sharia Penal Code, 2000.

The statement, while disclosing that the persons have been sentenced to death, noted that some Muslims in Kano had threatened violence if the accused were set free.

Nyas, leader of the Tijjaniyya Muslim sect, was accused of making unguarded statements against Prophet Mohammed during his usual preaching at Goron Dutse area of Kano metropolis.

The trial was carried out in secret; details of its proceedings, the name of the judge who conducted the trial, and the names of the seven other convicts were not disclosed. The court official who made the information public also declined to provide his full names.

The court reportedly freed Alkasim Abubakar, Yahya Abubakar, Isa Abubakar, and Abdullahi Abubakar – who were arrested alongside the nine convicted persons.

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