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Bauchi: Suspected gays stoned

Posted by Mustapha Shehu in Bauchi on 2007/08/23 | Views: 618 |

Bauchi: Suspected gays stoned


Youth suspected to be gay, arrested a fortnight ago and arraigned before the Tudun Alkali Area Court in Bauchi, were yesterday stoned as they filed to enter the Black Maria that was to convey them back to prison.

Youth suspected to be gay, arrested a fortnight ago and arraigned before the Tudun Alkali Area Court in Bauchi, were yesterday stoned as they filed to enter the Black Maria that was to convey them back to prison.

The case, which was heard yesterday, attracted a large crowd of observers and journalists from foreign and local media, amidst heavy security provided by a joint team of the police and prison warders.

The high interest shown in the case might be due to insinuations that they may be executed if convicted.

Section 372 of the Bauchi Shari’a Penal Code Law 2001, under which they were charged, stipulates a maximum penalty of one year prison sentence and 30 lashes on conviction.

These reports, according to a Counsel, must have informed taking-over of the prosecution by Bauchi State Ministry of Justice from the Nigeria police, who initially brought the charges against the youth, to avert any unforeseen errors.

The police First Information Report (FIR) titled “Idle Persons and Vagabonds,” described them as: “dressed in women’s fashion practising sodomy as their profession, thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 372, Sub section 2(E) of Bauchi State Shari’ah Penal Code Law. suggested 2001. The presiding Alkali (Judge) Alhaji Tanimu Abubakar however described the charge as misleading and erroneous as the suspects were only arrested with female attires. Delivering his address before adjourning the case to September 13th to allow the new prosecuting team from the justice ministry headed by Barrister Aliyu Ibn Abbas time to study the case, the Alkali said the charges should have been “vagabonds and wearing of female attire” without the sodomy aspect of it. THISDAY investigations revealed that the stoning incidence happened because seven of the suspects were granted bail. The stoning youths, suspected to be from the surrounding wards felt bitter that instead of executing the suspects, they were being granted bail, as only 11 of the 18 suspects were seen mounting the Black Maria after the court session. Though none of the suspects was hit, pandemonium ensued when both foreign and local journalists scampered into the safety of the little courtroom away from the torrential missiles. The police had to shot in the air and throw teargas canisters before the youths were dispersed. Also attempts later by the irate youths to lynch the Alkali and torch the court with petrol were equally averted by some residents of the area and the police. Barrister Ibn Abbas, the new prosecution counsel, told journalist that he was likely to review the charge to reflect the actual scenario the suspects were found at the time of arrest. The defence, provided by a legal aid organisation: “Lawyer Alert”, is headed by Barrister Ralph Moye. Moye sought for an interpreter as he is non-Hausa speaking and the court proceedings were conducted in Hausa.

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Comments (3)

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Abieyuwa(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Otasowie means evening life is better than morning life. There is an error in your “evening life is better than evening life”?

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Naija g(Houston, Minnesota, US)says...

Sokari doesn’t mean joy. Joy is Biobela. Go to the village and ask the meaning of the name.

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Fay(Katy, Texas, US)says...

Actually translates to bravehearted.