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Deborah: Sokoto govt, police keep mum on prosecution of culprits

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THE Sokoto State Government and Police Command have kept mute over the prosecution of some arrested suspects in the brutal murder of Deborah Samuel.

Deborah, a 200-level Home Economics student of Sokoto State College of Education, was lynched and burnt by a mob of Muslim youths in May this year.

She was accused of blasphemy against the Prophet Muhammed on a student’s WhatsApp group.

Her killing attracted global outrage and condemnation.

Last month, the United States Government said her horrific and painful death was fuelled by hatred.

Two suspects-Bilyaminu Aliyu and Aminu Hukunci were arrested by the police and subsequently remanded in custody by a Magistrate Court in Sokoto.

They were charged with taking part in the killing.

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Nigerians have expressed concern and desire to know about the progress of the case.

In August, the state police command said those it arrested and arraigned were not the prime suspects, saying that they were only among those who organised the riot.

It explained that those arrested were still in remand custody as ordered by the court, explaining that the prime suspects were still at large and efforts were ongoing to arrest them.

“Those ones we arrested then, though not the suspected killers, contributed to the violent riot and were arraigned in court where the judge ordered that they be remanded,” it said.

“Concerning those suspected killers, we have circulated their pictures to media houses and sent our intelligence to every part of the state.”

However, several efforts by The ICIR to get the state government and the police to provide further updates on the case against the arrested suspects were unsuccessful.

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Several calls to Muhammad Ahmad Bello, Special Adviser, Media and Publicity to Sokoto State governor, were unanswered. A delivered and read WhatsApp message to his phone on Wednesday morning was not answered.

When called, the State Police Spokesperson Sanusi Abubakar asked the reporter to send him to reach out to him on WhatsApp so he would provide an update, but he has not replied at the time of filing this report.

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