A Kano State High Court on Tuesday convicted and sentenced a Kano-born atheist, Mubarak Bala, to 24 years imprisonment for blasphemy.
The trial judge, Justice Farouk Lawan jailed the convict after he found him guilty of arraigned an 18-count charge of blasphemy, incitement, contempt of religion and breach of public peace brought against him by the state government.
The convict changed his plea from not guilty to guilty on Tuesday.
Justice Lawan, in his ruling sentenced the convict to 24 years imprisonment and also ordered that the jail term shall commenced from the date when he was arrested.
He also ordered that the sentences for all the 18 charges for which Bala was convicted should run concurrently.
Earlier, the Prosecution Counsel, Muhammad Sani, told the court that the convict had on April 28, 2020, made a blasphemous post on his Facebook page.
Sanusi said the post was against Allah (SWA) and Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and had caused a major outrage in the city of Kano, where the convict hails from.
According to the prosecutor, the offence contravened the provision of Sections 114 and 210 of the Penal Code.
The defence counsel, James Ibor, pleaded for leniency on behalf of his client, who concurred and promised not to repeat the blasphemous comments.
On April 27 2020, Bala compared popular Lagos pastor and president of Synagogue Church of Nations Prophet TB Joshua to Prophet Mohammed.
“There’s no difference between prophet TB Joshua (S.A.W) of Lagos and Muhammadu (A.S.) of Saudi Arabia, it is better for our Nigeria to be terrorism,” Bala said wrote on his Facebook page.
In another post, Bala said, “Whoever believes religion has been duped – If you cant take blasphemy against Islam, criticizism of its doctrines, this page is not for you. I have not even started ooo.”
“Religion insults human reason and conscience, duped me that I have another lifetime,” Mubarak said in his Facebook bio.