By Babban Jumai, Kano
Kano State High Court Appeal Division has ordered the retrial of Yahaya Aminu case who was sentenced to death by State Upper Sharia Court Presided by Aliyu Muhd Kani in connection to some derogatory statement he uttered against Islamic Religion.
In a unanimous decision by a two man panel of justices, Chief Judge of Kano State, Justice Nuraddeen Sagir and Justice Nasiru Saminu upheld that the lower court has failed to provide a legal representation to the alleged blasphemer despite the existing framework for legal aid council in Kano State.
The court also said the alleged offence was charge under section 382 (b) of Kano Penal code law of 2000 which is capital in nature explaining that section 269 of Administration of Criminal Justice Law of the State 2007 provides that “Any person standing trial on capital offence shall be entitle to legal representation.”
They said Aminu sheriff was sentenced to death by hanging without according him fair hearing to defend himself.
The court ordered retrial of the case to another upper Sharia, court saying there were irregularities in the conduct of the trial.
Commenting on the argument canvassed by the counsel to the appellant as ground of Appeal that the Penal Sharia Code law 2000 of Kano State or any Penal Sharia Code Law in Nigeria has no constitutional foundation since it is a law with the sole aim of advancing and placating Islamic religious interests and is apparently opened to Political and class manipulation of citizens.
The court upheld that Kano State Sharia Penal Code law 2000 was established by Kano state house of Assembly and is the collective views and wishes of Kano State people.
Consequently, the court affirmed the ingenuity of the law.
The Court of Appeal similarly discharged and acquittal Umar Faruk was sentenced to 10 years in Correctional Facility for making blasphemy.
The court upheld that the lower court by Aliyu Muhd Kani did not take cognizant of the age of Faruk who was a minor at the time he committed the offence.
He was discharged and acquittal.
Reacting to the judgement, Kano State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Barrister Musa Abdullahi Lawan said he will study the judgment first to take next line of action.
The attorney general also expressed joy as the judgment affirmed the legality of Kano State Sharia Penal Code law 2000.