Appeals court upholds retrial of Kano singer’s blasphemy case

The Kano Division Court of Appeal on Wednesday upheld the judgment of the Kano State High Court, Appellate Division, which ordered a retrial of the blasphemy case against Kano Singer, Aminu Yahaya Sharif , who was sentenced to death for having made derogatory remarks against the personality of Muhammad the Prophet.

Sharif, a resident of Sharifai in Kano was arrested and arraigned in the Higher Sharia Court for committing blasphemy against Prophet Muhammad in a song he released via social media sometime in 2020.

He was charged under Section 382(B) of the Kano Sharia Penal Code Act 2000 and consequently sentenced to death by the Filin Hockey Sharia Superior Court in Kano.

Dissatisfied with the judgment, his lawyer, Attorney Kola Alapinni, approached the Kano State Court to request that the trial court’s judgment be quashed, on the grounds that the convicted person was not represented by a lawyer, which is contrary to the doctrine of fair trial. and natural justice.

Alapinni also urged the court to quash the charge against Sharif, alleging that the Sharia penal code law contravened the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended.

In its judgment rendered on January 21, 2021, the Kano State High Court, Appellate Division presided over by Judge Nura Sagir, ordered a retrial of the case with the full representation of his attorney.

Against the judgment of the Kano State High Court, Appellate Division, Sharif again appealed to the Court of Appeal, Kano Division.

After hearing submissions and legal arguments from both the appellant and the respondent on Wednesday, the Court of Appeal upheld the decision of the Kano State High Court.

Similarly, the court upheld the legality of the Sharia Penal Code Act 2000.

It was also recognized as a crime punishable by death under the Kano State Sharia Code Act 2000.

The three-judge panel that delivered the judgment includes Justice IG Mbaba, Justice BM Ugo and Justice Abubakar Muaz Lamido.

Judge Mbaba was found to disagree with the majority while Judges Ugo and Lamido upheld the judgment of the Kano State High Court and therefore ordered a retrial.

State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice Musa Lawan described the judgment as a victory for all Kano citizens.

He said the Court of Appeal fully recognized the Kano State Sharia Penal Code Act 2000.

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