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Kano Mosque Fire: Court remands principal suspect

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An Upper Shari’a Court sitting in Rijiyar Zaki Kano, yesterday, ordered the remand of 38-year-old Shafi’u Abubakar, in a corrections centre, for allegedly setting a mosque on fire and killing 14 people.

The defendant, who lives at Gadan Village in Gezawa Local Government Area of Kano State, is charged with mischief by fire, causing grievous hurt and culpable homicide.

The Prosecution Counsel, Commissioner for Justice and Attorney-General of Kano State, Mr Haruna Isa-Dederi, told the court that the defendant committed the offence on May 15, 2024, at Gadan Village Gezawa Local Government of Kano State.

He alleged that on the same date at about 5:15 a.m the defendant used petrol and set a mosque at Gadan Village on fire during subhi(Dawn) prayer.

“The defendant poured the petrol on the carpet where Sani Suleiman and 24 others were praying, and closed the door.

“In the process several people sustained various degrees of injuries and were rushed to Murtala Muhammad Specialist Hospital, Kano for treatment, while Suleiman and 13 others died while receiving treatment,” Dederi said

The AG said the case is a capital offence, he urged the court to allow the defendant get a lawyer to give him his constitutional right.

The defendant, however, pleaded guilty to all the three count.

According to him, the offence contravenes the provision of section 336, 247 and 221 of Kano State Shari’a Penal Code Law.

The presiding judge, Malam Halhalatu Zakariyya, ordered the court registry to write a letter to the Legal Aid Council of Nigeria to provide a lawyer for the defendant.

He ordered the remand of the defendant and adjourned the matter until May 31, for hearing.

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