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14-year-old Girl Faces Murder Trial Over Forced Marriage

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A Nigerian court on Monday postponed the murder trial of a 14-year-old girl accused of poisoning the 35-year-old man she was forced to marry, a case that has thrown the spotlight on the influence of Islamic law in the region.

Wasila Tasi’u has also been charged with the murder of three others who allegedly ate the food laced with rat poison that she prepared and served in April this year, a week after her marriage to Umaru Sani.

“Wasila was to appear today,” but the case has been postponed indefinitely because of a backlog caused by a judicial staff strike, said Salisu Yakubu, registrar at the High Court in town of Gezawa.

Police say Tasi’u confessed to poisoning Sani and his guests at the wedding party in the village of Unguwar Yansoro village, about 60 kilometres (40 miles) outside Nigeria’s second city of Kano.

“She did it because she was forced by her parents to marry a man she did not love,” Kano state police spokesman Musa Magaji Majia told AFP.

Her lawyer Hussaina Aliyu rejects claims that her client made a legally valid confession.

She said Tasi’u was questioned by police without a parent or lawyer present and so any comments she may have made are inadmissable in court.

Aliyu, who works with International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), has sought to have the case transferred to a juvenile court, a bid rejected by justice officials in Kano.

“All we are saying is do justice to her. Treat the case as it is. Treat her as a child,” Aliyu said.

The marriage of teenage girls to much older men is rampant in deeply conservative, mainly Muslim northern Nigeria, especially in poorer rural areas.

The region has since 2000 been under sharia Islamic law which some say does not prohibit the marriage of underage girls.

Under Nigeria’s marriage act, which applies nationwide, a woman under the age of 21 who wants to marry must have the consent of her parents.

With that consent there is no minimum marrying age, including in the Christian south, “which is very, very unfortunate,” said human rights lawyer Festus Keyamo.

But cases of underage marriage are rare in the south, and the Tasi’u case has called attention to the confusing hybrid legal system in the north, where the secular criminal code is unevenly applied as police and prosecutors try to strike a balance with sharia provisions.

Jiti Ogunye, another rights lawyer, said sharia was irrelevant in the Tasi’u case.

“A girl of 14 cannot stand trial under the criminal code. This case is just adding to our country’s negative reputation in the eyes of the international community,” he told AFP.

He called on Kano authorities to immediately dismiss the charges and start treating Tasi’u as a victim, noting the possibility she was raped by the man she was ordered to marry.

“Rather than talking about making her liable for an alleged crime, Kano state should be rehabilitating her. She is a victim,” he added.

The issue of child marriage has been fiercely debated in Nigeria over the past year, sparked by a proposal from a northern lawmaker that any girl, regardless of her age, should be legally considered an adult with full citizenship rights.

The senator who floated the proposal, Ahmed Yerima of Zamfara state, had reportedly married a 13-year-old Egyptian girl and wanted her to become a Nigerian citizen.

The measure from Yerima, also an ex-governor of northwestern Zamfara, has not become law, but the proposal was intensely criticised by activists who say Nigeria should not permit any application of sharia, even in the north.

Defence lawyer Aliyu said the case should not be a debate about youth marriage in a Muslim society.

She supported Ogunye’s argument that regardless of religion or region, a child cannot face criminal charges in a high court and the case must be moved to the juvenile system.

“She is still a child,” the lawyer said. [AFP]

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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. emeka

    August 4, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    They shuold spear the little child on her right,in the other case she didt no what she did.law can be change that females ascpt who they love at a matchur age like 17.at this age she can write her name then no d good&d bad.

  2. rahim matt

    August 5, 2014 at 8:10 am

    the girl should be treated with kid gloves. it is the fault of the parents to force a child to get married to someone she doesnt love. it is very wrong this babaric culture should be stopped. you cannot prosecute a child who acted out of fear. the court should treat this case with care and not start up something we wont be able to handle.

  3. omooba

    August 5, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    it is not the fault of the girl that she was forced to marry against her will.thus girl should not be made to suffer,it was the only way she felt she can escape from the hell hole she was forced to by her parents and the society

  4. precious

    August 5, 2014 at 4:18 pm

    she should not b punish cus she acted out of fear wen d old man abused her body
    pls forgive her

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Femi Otedola Reacts To Lekki Tollgate Shooting

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Femi Otedola Finally Reacts To Lekki Tollgate Shooting
Femi Otedola

Femi Otedola

Nigerian businessman, Femi Otedola has finally reacted to the shooting that took place at Lekki Tollgate, Lagos on Tuesday.

Information Nigeria recalls men dressed in military wears opened fire on unarmed #EndSARS protesters, who convened at the area.

Otedola took to his Instagram page on Sunday to commiserate with the families of those who lost their lives in the unfortunate incident.

Sharing a photo of the Nigerian flag, he wrote;

“The horrors that have been unfolding in our country have left me filled with sadness. I deeply commiserate with those who have lost their loved ones and as a father, I share the sentiment of my three daughters who protested in Lagos and London. As a young boy of 16, I participated in the ‘Ali Must Go Protest’ of 1978, so I understand the determination of our youths who rightly want our country to be better. We must all do our part to make Nigeria great! I will continue to do my own quota in providing for those who are most in need of support in our country in these tough times .…F.Ote💲”

Read Also: Femi Otedola Spotted Dancing With His Children (Video)

See his post below:

Otedola’s post

Otedola’s post

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“Oke Wasn’t Killed By Stray Bullet, He Was Stabbed By Thugs” – Brother Claims

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“Oke Wasn’t Killed By Stray Bullet, He Was Stabbed By Thugs” - Brother Claims
Oke

Oke

Information Nigeria recalls a graphics designer identified as Oke, was killed hours after tweeting “Nigeria will not kill me” on Wednesday.

It was reported that the young man had passed away after he was hit by a stray bullet.

The deceased’s younger brother, Daniel has come out to clear the air regarding the circumstances leading to his death.

Daniel revealed his brother was stabbed on the neck by thugs who infiltrated and ransacked their home.

In his words;

Good day, My name is Obi-Enadhuze Daniel younger brother of the now deceased Okechukwu Obi-Enadhuze @O_Okee . I, my brother and mother lived at makinde police barracks, mafoluku, Oshodi, Lagos State.

Today at about 11 o’clock in the morning the police station at makinde was attacked by thugs who wanted to destroy the station, I my mom and brother were holed up in our house.

 The attack went on for hours before the thugs eventually breached the police and proceeded to set the station on fire, after accomplishing this they set their sights to the barracks and began the assault, they proceeded to destroy every car in the barracks, my mom’s 2 cars where destroyed and set on fire and then they infiltrated our house by breaking the door they then proceeded to ransack the house and carted away with everything we own. 

 my brother on trying to get them to take everything but spare us was pushed to my mom’s room and stabbed on the neck, the attacker then proceeded to attack me but missed my neck but got my chin instead, after this my mom and I carried my brothers body to the entrance of the station soliciting for help from the thugs still ravaging the barracks, we were finally able to put him in a wheelbarrow and took him to a hospital where he was rejected because “he was already dead” unfazed we moved him to another hospital where he met the same treatment this was where he bled his last drops of blood and died, his body has now been moved to a morgue

we have lost every single thing we own, as our house was completely ransacked and set on fire the only thing left is my brothers phone and at about 8 o’clock this evening the barracks was still on fire but Okechukwu has paid with the ultimate price

I and my mother are homeless with nothing now but we’re safe for now, we thank everyone that has been able to reach out to us, and were able to share consoling words with us in these trying times, God bless you

While we were holed up in the house the three of us said these words together and we say it again ” THREE OF US ARE HERE, THREE OF US ARE TOGETHER, THREE OF US ARE SAFE”

Let it be known that my brother @O_Okee  was NOT killed by a police bullet but died a hero protecting my mother and I.

If you see this please retweet, let the world know how Okechukwu died. He was NOT killed by a police bullet but thugs in his home!”

Read Also: RIP Oke: Barely 3hours After Tweeting “Nigeria Will Not End Me” #EndSARS Protester Dies From Gunshot

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Youths Burn Down Sanwo-Olu’s Mother’s House In Lagos (VIDEO)

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Youths Burn Down Gov Sanwo-Olu’s Mother’s House In Lagos (VIDEO)

Youths Burn Down Gov Sanwo-Olu’s Mother’s House In Lagos (VIDEO)Lagos youths have set the family house of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on fire.

This was after the Governor said that no nobody was killed during the shooting by soldiers at Lekki Toll Gate on Tuesday night.

Sanwo-Olu had debunked claims that the soldiers opened fire and killed some peaceful protesters.

Recall that men of the Nigerian Army reportedly opened fire on protesters following the declaration of 24 hours curfew by the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwolu.

Bullets fired by security operatives hit some persons and at least two persons have been confirmed killed by the police and many injured

Voices in viral footage blamed the shootings on soldiers.

However, the angry youth attacked several important places such as Nigeria Port Authority, TVC News, and the family house of the Governor where his mother resides.

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