Judicial Practice in Islamic Criminal Law In Nigeria—a Tentative Overview

Judicial Practice in Islamic Criminal Law In Nigeria—a Tentative Overview g.j. weimann 240 JUDICIAL PRACTICE IN ISLAMIC CRIMINAL LAW IN NIGERIA—A TENTATIVE OVERVIEW * GUNNAR J. WEIMANN Abstract Uniquely, in Nigeria Islamic Criminal Law was introduced in the framework of a secular federal constitution. In 2000 and 2001, twelve Northern states adopted legislation on the Èadd offences and the Islamic law on homicide and bodily harm. Reliable statistics on the number of cases tried under the new laws are unavailable. Based on information from the media and human rights organisations, I present roughly 125 criminal cases tried before Nigerian Shar Ê#a courts between 2000 and 2004. This sample shows that Shar Ê#a was particularly enforced in states dominated by the Hausa. In religiously mixed states, the bid to introduce Shar Ê#a became part of the religious groups’ competition for hegemony and access to public resources, with violent consequences. The expectations which many Muslims attached to the introduction of Shar Ê#a were inflated. Its impact on the security of life and property, the fight against corruption and the promotion of good governance has probably been minimal. I n january 2000, the Northern Nigerian state of Zamfara enact- ed a Shar Ê#a Penal Code 1 which “restored” the Èadd offences http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Islamic Law and Society Brill

Judicial Practice in Islamic Criminal Law In Nigeria—a Tentative Overview

Islamic Law and Society, Volume 14 (2): 240 – Jan 1, 2007

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© 2007 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0928-9380
eISSN
1568-5195
DOI
10.1163/156851907781492494
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

g.j. weimann 240 JUDICIAL PRACTICE IN ISLAMIC CRIMINAL LAW IN NIGERIA—A TENTATIVE OVERVIEW * GUNNAR J. WEIMANN Abstract Uniquely, in Nigeria Islamic Criminal Law was introduced in the framework of a secular federal constitution. In 2000 and 2001, twelve Northern states adopted legislation on the Èadd offences and the Islamic law on homicide and bodily harm. Reliable statistics on the number of cases tried under the new laws are unavailable. Based on information from the media and human rights organisations, I present roughly 125 criminal cases tried before Nigerian Shar Ê#a courts between 2000 and 2004. This sample shows that Shar Ê#a was particularly enforced in states dominated by the Hausa. In religiously mixed states, the bid to introduce Shar Ê#a became part of the religious groups’ competition for hegemony and access to public resources, with violent consequences. The expectations which many Muslims attached to the introduction of Shar Ê#a were inflated. Its impact on the security of life and property, the fight against corruption and the promotion of good governance has probably been minimal. I n january 2000, the Northern Nigerian state of Zamfara enact- ed a Shar Ê#a Penal Code 1 which “restored” the Èadd offences

Journal

Islamic Law and SocietyBrill

Published: Jan 1, 2007

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