Mubarak Bala, President of the Humanist Association of Nigeria, has been arrested this afternoon in Kaduna in Northern Nigeria. Two police officers, who were not in uniform took him from his residence.
He is currently detained at the Gbabasawa police station in Kaduna. According to local sources, his arrest could be in connection with a charge of blasphemy.
A group of lawyers has petitioned the Kano state command to prosecute Mubarak for insulting Prophet Muhammad on his Facebook page.
One S. S. Umar signed the petition. And this is how one Yusuf Jnr (@MrZage) commented on the petition on his tweeter account: “Some group of lawyers finally write a petition against that animal Mubarak Bala”. He described Mubarak as ‘an animal’.
Besides, there is also an online petition on change.org. Halima Sa’adiya Umar started the petition asking Facebook to close down the account of Mubarak Bala.
All of us at the Humanist Association of Nigeria are deeply worried by the arrest and detention of our president, Mubarak Bala. Mubarak Bala will likely be handed over to the Kano state police command, that will prosecute him for blasphemy, a crime that caries a death sentence under sharia law. We urge the Inspector General of Police, the governor of Kaduna, Mallam Elrufai to ensure his immediate release.
Free Mubarak Bala Now
Leo Igwe Ph.D
Chair, Board of Trustees, Humanist Association of Nigeria