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Sunday, 5 June 2016

Many Are Mad, Few Are Roaming

I have been so out of touch with a whole lot of happenings around me recently, so you can imagine my shock at reading about a recent beheading in Kano over an alleged blaspheme. There were pictures of a decapitated head being paraded around a Northern town amidst claims that a woman had aggravated a Muslim passerby to the point of being accused of blasphemy and being beheaded. It made no sense to me to imagine that any human being would slaughter another over differences in religion.

As I probed further, I discovered that what was being gorily circulated was not what happened. From my findings, reports claim a 74-year-old woman who owns a store in Kano State in Northern Nigeria had asked a Muslim man not to perform his pre-prayer ablutions in front of her shop and that infuriated him to the point of raising a mob, accusing the poor old woman of blaspheming his Allah. The accused was beaten to death by a baying mob in front of her husband, who watched defencelessly as it all happened. There is absolutely no justification for what has happened and the government just has to find a way to ensure such never occurs again. We are all citizens of Nigeria, regardless of where we find ourselves residing within the country. Everyone SHOULD feel safe always rather than live in fear of being attacked over tribal or religious differences.

What would possess a person to bludgeon another person, albeit an old woman who had every right to ask him not to wash his feet in front of her shop? Why do some people feel the need to do the job of their Deity for them? How does refusal to allow feet washing translate into blasphemy and subsequently lead to murder? There's no buttering up the fact that that woman was brutally murdered in cold blood over a misconception which should never have been an issue but for religious fanaticism.

I am glad at how swiftly the State Government has acted in apprehending the a prime suspect in all of these. I hope the late Mrs. Bridget Patience will get justice, even in death. I hope all those involved would be apprehended, tried and punished for this dastardly act and for the trauma they have subjected the family of the victim to.

Rest in peace ma'am.

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