There Is No Basis For Persecuting Her

Sowore and woman

Nigerian activist, Omoyele Sowore, has called for the immediate release of a woman, Rhoda Jatau, standing trial in Bauchi State for condemning the suspects in connection with the killing of Deborah Samuel.

Jatau was arrested by the operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) in May 2022 after condemning the lynching of the Christian female student of Sokoto College, Deborah Samuel, accused of blasphemy by Islamic fanatics in Sokoto.

Jatau is facing charges of inciting public disturbance, exciting contempt of religious creed, and cyberstalking.

The prosecution had since closed its case, but the defence’s attempt to present its no-case argument was repeatedly stalled as the presiding judge deferred court dates and the trial experienced a prolonged timeline.

According to the People’s Gazette, the Bauchi State High Court’s ruling on Monday threw out the no-case submission of Rhoda Jatau after 18 months in detention.

The no-case submission meant that the court affirmed the legal standing of the authorities to argue the charges brought against Jatau even though it is substantiated with scanty evidence.

In a post via Twitter on Wednesday, the former presidential aspirant called for the release of Jatau, insisting there is no basis for persecuting her when nothing has been done to the murderers of Deborah Samuel.

He wrote, “The Bauchi government must free Rhoda Jatau immediately. There is no basis for persecuting her, it is bad enough that nothing was done to punish the murderers of Deborah Samuel. Nigeria must stop these violations with urgency. #FreeRhodaJatau NOW! Free all Nigerians being prosecuted for and unjustly jailed for blasphemy.”

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