Deborah’s Lynching: NBA Annuls Sokoto Confab, Kicks Against Charges Preferred Against Suspects

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The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) has annulled its conference slated to hold in Sokoto State as a result of last Thursday’s lynching of Deborah Yakubu, a year-two student of the Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto.

The student, alleged to have committed blasphemy, was summarily lynched and her body set ablaze by a mob composed mainly of her school mates who forcibly retrieved her from the college’s security who reportedly tried to save her.

The NBA in a statement on Tuesday announced that the event scheduled to hold from Sunday, May 22 to 26, 2022, has been cancelled.

The statement, signed by NBA President, Olumide Akpata, said the conference which was to hold under the theme “Rule of Law and Democratic Evolution in Nigeria,” as a result of what he attributed to current security condition in Sokoto.

“The NBA is deeply worried not just by the chilling news of the murder of Miss Deborah Yakubu, but also by the sudden and sad turn of events and the deteriorating security situation in Sokoto State,” Akpata stated.

He added that “it has become apparent that we cannot guarantee the safety of our guest speakers, delegates and other stakeholders that have committed to attend the NBA-SPIDEL’s conference.

“Accordingly, the Executive Committee of NBA-SPIDEL came to the painful decision to request, and I have approved, that the 2022 NBA-SPIDEL Annual Conference be postponed not only for the safety of our conferees and guests, but as a mark of respect for the memory of the slain Miss Deborah Yakubu.”

Akpata also expressed NBA’s concerns regarding the charges preferred against suspects that have been arraigned for the gruesome murder of the student.

“We are, however, worried by yet-to-be-confirmed reports reaching us that the suspects have been charged with mere breach of public peace in an episode that cut short Deborah’s life in her prime,” he said adding that the NBA is opposed to a “banalisation of the situation.”

He therefore called on the “Sokoto State Government to immediately reconsider its prosecution strategy and file charges that truly reflect the gravity of the situation.”

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