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#FreeMubarakBala: Humanist Leader Facing Death Threats, Human Rights Activists Condemn His Arrest

by on April 29, 2020
 

The President of Humanists Association of Nigeria Mubarak Bala has been arrested on the charges of Blasphemy.

Mubarak was arrested at his residence in Kaduna State. He was accused of insulting Prophet Muhammad on his Facebook page.

A group of lawyers sent in a petition to the Commissioner of Police in Kano State to prosecute him.

Unconfirmed news in circulation has it that Humanist leader who is currently detained at the Gbabasawa Police Station in Kaduna, will be transferred to Kano where he will be prosecuted for blasphemy, a crime that carries a death sentence under the sharia law.

So many death threats to him, have been seen on social media as some of the Muslim faithful are still furious over his comment on Prophet Muhammad.

Concerned citizens, most notably Human Rights Activists have accused the police of endangering Mubarak’s life. They beckoned on the Government to intervene and ensure his immediate release.

See below some of their reactions.

“Hello, @PoliceNG you have endangered Mubarak’s life and if you succeed in transferring him to Kano, you will be held responsible. These are the people that you should be arresting. There are several death threats online on his page everyday.”

“Criminalising blasphemy under national laws rather than leaving it as a sin under personal beliefs is part of what Boko Haram stands for. Don’t be like Boko Haram.”

“We condemn in the strongest terms the arrest of our humanist colleague @MubarakBala by the Nigerian authorities, who have accused him of ‘blasphemy’. We join with the international humanist community in urging his immediate release.”

“Mubarak Bala, President of the Humanist Association of Nigeria, and advisory board member of @iaatheists, has been arrested for blasphemy-for ‘insulting’ Islam’s prophet Muhammad on Facebook.”

However, there are persons who still see the need for Mubarak to be charged and tried in court.

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See below a standout comment from a Muslim faithful.

1) Its interesting that there is one area in which both legal systems do not contradict each other & are in agreement. Both customary & Sharia laws view blasphemy as breaking the law. The fact that this behaviour is unacceptable is agreed upon, it’s the punishment that varies..

2) Here is a quote from the criminal code of Nigeria describing the attitude of both of these systems to this act:
“Any person who does an act which any class of persons consider a public insult to their religion, with the intention that they should consider the act an……

https://twitter.com/muhammad_umar/status/1255439576451231744?s=19

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3)….insult, & any person who does an unlawful act with the knowledge that any class of persons will consider it an insult, is guilty of a misdemeanour & is liable to imprisonment for two years”.
The extent of the repercussions will therefore be based to the applicable law.

https://twitter.com/muhammad_umar/status/1255440925565779978?s=19

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