Court set aside the death penalty imposed on the singer Kano for blasphemy

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The Kano State High Court (Appeal Division) has set aside the death penalty levied on Yahya Sharif Aminu, a Kano-based musician, convicted of blasphemy.

Nuraddeen Sagir, the Chief Justice of the State, who presided over the court, delivered a verdict on Thursday.

He said that the trial was full of errors, as the defendant had not been granted proper counsel.

According to him, the decision of the Upper Sharia court infringed Section 2-6-9 of the Criminal Justice Act.

The judge ordered that the appeal be re-tested by the same court and that the appellant be granted a fair hearing.

Sagir also directed that the appellant, who could be heard by another judge, be granted full legal representation.

The Shariah court in Kano sentenced the singer to death on 10 August 2020 after he was found guilty in a song of blasphemy against Prophet Muhammad.

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This provoked a national indignation.

Abdullahi Ganduje, governor of Kano, said he would not spend time signing Aminu’s death warrant.

The United Kingdom rejected the death penalty passed on to the artist, claiming that people had the freedom to share their views openly and respectfully criticise self-righteousness.

In October, Aminu’s lawyers lodged an appeal before the State Court of Appeal.

Sagir has set aside the verdict and conviction of Umar Faruk, a 13-year-old boy who was sentenced to 10 years in jail for blasphemy.

 

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