By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi.
Governor Mohammed Abubakar of Bauchi state has pardoned 20 people being detained in Bauchi central prison for allegedly stoning him at Bauchi Ei-del praying ground during the last Eid-el-fitr celebration.
He announced their pardon when a team of Amnesty International paid him a courtesy visit in Bauchi Thursday, saying that he never wished to punish them for what they did against him.
“It is not my wish to arrest them but I have to do that”, Abubakar said, stressing the need for people to respect their leaders at every level of the society.
“Even the Holy Quran teaches us that we should respect your leaders. So I don’t see any reason why I will be stoned by my people just because I am conducting verification exercise of civil servants in my state”.
The Governor assured the visitors that that he will communicate his decision to the state Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice for him to go to the prison and free those people to their families.
He also pleaded with people to be patience with government in the face of the current hardship being experienced as a result of the current recession in the country.
Abubakar, who assured that the current hardship will soon come to pass, however said that government was doing everything possible to make life better for the citizens
The leader of the Amnesty International delegation, Dr. Suleiman Shu’aibu who is also the Amnesty’s Head of Northern states, had pleaded with the governor to pardon those who stoned him during the Eid-el fitr festivities.
Dr. Suleiman Shu’aibu recalled that they got to know about the people’s detention while pursuing a case in Bauchi, pleaded “We are calling on the Governor to please pardon and forgive them for Allah’s sake”.
Shu’aibu explained that they were in Bauchi to mediate between a member of the Bauchi State House of Assembly, Hon Yakubu Abdullahi Shehu and his late younger brother’s wife, Malama Firdaushi Sulaiman, who had alleged that the lawmaker mysterious killed her first daughter for ritual purpose.
He said that the mediation between the family members was facilitated by the State Commissioner of Justice, Barrister Ibrahim Umar in collaboration with Amnesty International, Human rights activists and the State Council of Ulamas.
According to him, the intervention of the mediators led to the withdrawal of suit filed against the widow and two others by the lawmaker who is representing Bauchi Central state constituency in the Assembly.
Hon. Yakubu had dragged the three before a magistrate court in Bauchi for defamation of character through the media and malicious lies capable of tarnishing his personality and political career.
Shu’aibu also informed the Governor that the team while on the lawmaker’s case stumbled on the case of one Malam Mahmud Tanimu arrested by the police for allegedly attempting to break Bauchi central prison with his accomplices.
Accused Mahmud Tanimu was arrested by the police in Bauchi for alleged concluded plans with his accomplices to break the prison in order to free his brother, which case the Amnesty investigated and found the allegation not to be true.
“What happened was that the suspect went to the prison to visit his brother who was standing trial in a case of terrorism and said to his brother that by the grace of God, he would be out of prison before the last Sallah celebration.
“It is that statement that Tanimu made that led him to stay in prison for about 53 days but we thank God he his free today through the intervention of Amnesty International” Shu’aibu concluded.
By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi.