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BLASPHEMY: Abduljabbar Went Mute in Court, Judge Reacts by Ordering Mental, ENT Evaluation

BLASPHEMY: Abduljabbar Went Mute in Court, Judge Reacts by Ordering Mental, ENT Evaluation

The criminal trial of Abduljabbar Nasiru Kabara could not continue on Thursday, as the trial court, an Upper Shari’a Court sitting at Kofar Kudu, Kano, ordered that the defendant be referred to the Dawanau Psychiatric Hospital for mental evaluation.

The order was sequel to the refusal of the defendant to respond to charges read to him.

Abduljabbar was facing trial over offences related to blasphemy.

When additional charges were read to him on Thursday, he simply went mute and did not take a plea, which traditionally could have been “guilty” or “not guilty”.

The development dumbfounded the court and, since the principle of fair hearing entails that the defendant understands the charge against him, the case could not proceed, as the court could not ascertain that he understood anything by his mute disposition.

The prosecution counsel, Suraj Sa’eda, had told the court that the defendant on August 10, October 25 and December 20, 2019, made blasphemous comments against Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in the prophet’s marriage to Nana Safiyya in Jautul Fara Section 93 (40) and Hadith 1,365 and 1,428.

The presiding judge in the matter, Malam Ibrahim Sarki-Yola, ordered that Abduljabbar’s mental condition be ascertained, while an ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat) checks should also be carried out on him at the Murtala Muhammad Specialist Hospital, Kano.

The case was adjourned September 16 for continuation of hearing.


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Faruk Khalil
Faruk Khalilhttps://nigeriansketch.com/
Khalil Faruk (Deputy Editor-in-Chief), has a Bachelors and Master's degree in Political Science and has worked as a reporter, features editor and Deputy Editor-in-Chief respectively in a leading Nigerian daily. He has undergone trainings in journalism, photo journalism and online journalism within and outside Nigeria.

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