Pro-Democracy and human rights group, Concerned Nigerians has written to Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari; Kano state Governor, Umar Ganduje; and the American Embassy over the sentencing of Kano based musician, Yahaya Sharif-Aminu to death over blasphemy.
An upper Sharia court in the Hausawa Filin Hockey area of Kano state had on Monday found Sharif-Aminu guilty of committing blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammad for a song he circulated via WhatsApp in March. The 22-year-old was sentenced to death by hanging.
Reacting in a letter to the Nigerian President, Kano state Governor and the American embassy, the Concerned Nigerians group described the judgement as repulsive to natural justice, equity and good conscience.
The group also condemned the attempt to religiously police the country, saying that the country is a secular state.
“Our constitution forbids religious policing in section 10, which prohibits the practice of state religion in any part of Nigeria and section 38 guarantees the right to freedom of thought, religion and conscience, including freedom to change religion and belief,” it said.
“We are appealing to the president and The American Embassy to prevail on the Kano state Governor to pardon the victim of this great injustice as his life is in serious danger at the Kano Central Prison where he’s being detained.
“We are currently in touch with the victim and we can confirm that he is kept under the worst possible conditions.”
The human rights group appealed to Ganduje to grant Sharif-Aminu a pardon in line with the provision of section 212 of the constitution.
It also urged Buhari and the American embassy to prevail on the Kano State Government to grant the singer a pardon as his life is “under serious danger” at the Kano Central Prison.