There are speculations that the president of the Humanist Association of Nigeria, Mubarak Bala, has been murdered in prison in Kano, Northern Nigeria. A source who is familiar with the case of Bala posted a message late yesterday on social media announcing this tragic incident. The source noted that a Muslim prison mob killed Bala on Thursday, October 1, 2020. The corpse has been taken to the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, where an autopsy report has been forged to cover up the murder.
The message reads:
"I am also a humanist living and working in Kano. I am familiar with Mubarak Bala, who has been taken since April. His body has just been deposited at the Hospital Morgue. An Autopsy report is being doctored by the government and hospital management. They want to put either Lassa Fever or Corona Virus as a cause of death. They prepared the body and it is not so. There is a foul play and they plan to call his father to collect the remains for burial. We all know that it will be a relief to the family and they will not investigate nor probe, but will hurriedly bury him according to Islamic rites/rituals.
Once the body has been interred here in Kano, there is no way to carry out an autopsy as the gravesite too, maybe secret and a verbal autopsy will be given as is the culture. We believe he has been murdered as his body shows, and within 24 hours all will be done and explanations will follow, which is all belated and no one will be arrested nor tried, after all, it is their government and the country is fully dominated by Muslims, all in the security and official channels.
Please and please Sir, pass this to Humanists International as fast as you can, and on to global media, just so they will be caught off guard, let his body be taken away by a neutral and competent coroner and a proper judicial and professional report be revealed. He could have been killed by a mob in the prison in Kano, or by the Prison population which is all Muslims, or by the kano mobs, as was done to Gideon Akaluka in the 1990s, and Madam Bridget Abahime in 2016 in Kano. Please, Mubarak's last messages came from SIB, then Kurmawa/Goron Dutse Prisons in Kano".
Efforts are underway to authenticate the source and content of the message. While some people think this report might be a hoax, others are of the view that it sounds authentic. Some Muslims have threatened to kill Bala anywhere they find him. The Kano state Command claims that Mubarak Bala has been detained for his safety and security. On receiving this unfortunate, an Irish woman who has been campaigning vigorously for the release of Mubarak Bala rang up the Kano state commissioner of police, Habu Sani. This is what she said regarding her telephone conversation with Sani:
"I just spoke to Habu Sani (Police Commissioner, Kano State) again and he told me that he was just returning home from an Independence Dinner where the head of the prison was sitting near him. He assured me that Mubarak was in safe custody in the prison. He said he had told me previously that Mubarak was protected and he asked me how he was supposed to be murdered and I said I heard it was in the prison but I didn't know if it was inmates or a riot. I asked him to call the prison to confirm that nothing had happened in the past couple of hours. And he responded that as both he and the prison head were at the dinner, they would have been informed of any issues".
She planned to call the police commissioner again to confirm if the reported murder of Mubarak is a hoax or a fact.
Mubarak Bala was arrested on April 28, 2020, and taken to Kano, where he has been held incommunicado. He has been denied access to a lawyer and family visits. There have been several requests, and petitions to the police in Abuja and Kano to transfer his case out of Kano to a neutral ground, but the police have ignored the representations. The police in Kano have refused to formally arraign him and a case for the enforcement of Bala's fundamental human rights before a Federal High Court in Abuja has been dogged by delays and adjournments. Some notes from Mubarak Bala suggested that his life was at risk because some Muslim prison warders had been threatening him. The warders had been inciting Muslim prisoners to attack and kill him for blaspheming against the prophet of Islam.
Now I have a direct question for the governor of Kano state, Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Ibrahim Mukhtar, Commissioner of Police Habu Sani: Have you killed Mubarak Bala?