Crime & SecurityNewsNigeriaSharia Court Sentences Islamic Cleric To Death By Hanging

…Kano State Govt Ready To Sign Death Warrant

An Upper Sharia Court sitting in Kano has sentenced Islamic cleric, Abduljabbar Nasiru Kabara, to death by hanging.

His conviction and sentencing ended his 16-month-long trial before the court after he was charged and arraigned by the Kano State government with blasphemy, incitement, and sundry offences on July 16, 2021, which were said to be in contravention of Sections 382 and 375 of Kano Sharia Penal Code Law.

The cleric was tried and sentenced to death for his blasphemous statements against the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), an act, which is believed to be capable of inciting public peace.

Abduljabbar is a 52-year-old Islamic cleric and prominent scholar of the Qadiriyya Islamic sect in Kano. He is one of the sons of the Late Sheikh Nasiru Kabara, a former leader of the Qadiriyya sect of West Africa.

The presiding judge, Mallam Ibrahim Sarki Yola, while passing the verdict ordered the state government to seize the two mosques belonging to Abduljabbar and also called on all media to desist from using any of Abduljabbar’s teachings and pictures.
The judge, before giving his verdict in the Hausa language said, “I am convinced that the prosecution counsel has done their part and proven their points beyond a reasonable doubt”.

Barrister Aminu Ado Abubakar, who stood as the defense counsel, prayed to the Court to accord leniency to the accused person for he did what he did out of ignorance.
The embattled Abduljabbar, who was calm as ever before, seated on a chair, relaxed, counting his rosary with his fingers (supplicating) and listening attentively, however, stood up stating that he did not know the lawyer and that it was the first time he was seeing him.
“I don’t know him. This is the first time I am seeing him. He should not be allowed to speak on my behalf. I can and should be allowed to speak for myself,” he said.
The judge however said the lawyer is recognized by the court as the defense counsel.
Abduljabbar continued, “My lord, after I heard how you twisted all my evidence, you turned around all my submissions upside down, you have assigned words to me that I have never uttered.
“Deliver your judgment, and I am not asking for leniency at all. I want all my followers to know that I will die a hero and I don’t want you (the Judge) Ibrahim Sarki Yola to do me any favour or grant me leniency. This is my last word. Assalamu Alaikum.”

The convict is, by law, allowed a right to appeal up to the Supreme Court, but the right must be exercised within 30 days of the judgment at the state High Court.

Meanwhile, Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of Kano State, Lawan Musa, has said the state governor, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, is ready to sign the death warrant of the convicted Islamic cleric, Sheikh Abduljabbar Nasiru Kabara once all legal proceedings have been exhausted.

Musa said the governor remains committed to ensuring that there is no breakdown of law and order in the state, adding that the judgment of the court was a vindication of the case brought by the state government against the cleric, which shows no one is above the law.

“Nobody will be allowed to break the law without the necessary actions being taken.

“We took him (Abduljabbar) to court and gave him all the necessary things to defend himself and today, we thank God, the court has seen that we do have a case against him and has convicted him accordingly.

“Just as it (position of the governor) has not changed in the case of Hanifa, it has equally not changed on this.

“You know there are a lot of procedures to follow and His Excellency is ever ready; once that warrant is brought before him, he is going to sign it,” he added.

Hassan Umar Shallpella (Regional Correspondent)

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