Bilyaminu Aliyu and Aminu Hukunci, two suspects, were arraigned on Monday in connection with the lynching of a 200-Level Home Economics student at Shehu Shagari College of Education in Sokoto on May 12.
Deborah was lynched by a mob for alleged blasphemy. She was stoned to death and burnt.
The suspects, who were co-students of the deceased, were arrested and charged in a Sokoto Chief Magistrate’s Court for alleged involvement in the crime.
They entered not guilty pleas to the charges.
The prosecuting inspector was Khalil Musa.
Prof. Mansur Ibrahim, who led a team of 34 lawyers for the defendants, filed for their bail on liberal terms, citing constitutional requirements and portions of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law.
The accused were detained in a detention facility after the trial judge (name withheld for security reasons) reserved his decision on the bail application.
Deborah was accused of defaming Islam on a WhatsApp conversation platform set up by her classmates before being killed, and she refused to remove her post when requested to do so.
Following the arrest of those tied to Deborah’s lynching, a violent street protest ensued, with protestors demanding that security forces release them immediately.
On Saturday, Gov. Aminu Tambuwal ordered a 24-hour curfew on the Sokoto metropolis.
However, he lifted the round-the-clock curfew on Monday, and put in place a dusk till dawn restriction.
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