There is this reprehensible cartoon by the cartoonist who goes by the name of Asukwo depicting the governor of Kano with his arms amputated signing the death sentence of the young man condemned by the Sharia court for dragging the honour of the Prophet Muhammad into the proverbial mud. Most painful is how many Muslims continue sharing the image in support. Know your religion well, don’t jump into conclusions. If you are not a Muslim, learn about Islam and it’s laws before venturing into making comments.

First of all, not all taking money that does not belong to you is theft in Islam. It is not that black and white. For example, a child that steals from his or her parents will not have their arms amputated if found guilty because the child has rights on his or her parent’s money. What is expected is the child to seek forgiveness from the parents and if matured be made to return the money since there are other people as well with rights on the money. Other forms of punishment may be employed as a deterrent to future occurrences but not amputation. If the child is still young, no punishment is delivered but teachings to make it clear that the act is not good.

A wife can steal from her husband if he is not giving her her due rights, and she will not be punished for it. She should be cautious to take exactly what is enough for her and her children and try not to make it a habit.

In a similar manner, a public officer does not have his arm amputated if he is caught stealing public funds because as part of the community, he also has right in the collective wealth. He will rather be made to return the money and other forms of punishment will be implemented.

Amputation is valid when one steals from what he has no right in whatsoever. Another man sweats out to earn his wealth, and you come along to take it. And there are guidelines to follow by the owner of the property of which if any is absent, there will be no amputation. Chief among them is that the owner of the property must secure his property, making sure that all measures are in place to prevent an outsider from breaking through security to gain access.

Finally, the aim of the Sharia is not to amputate, whip, execute and punish people, those punishments are there to scare people away from crime and not really to be implemented unless it is absolutely necessary. This is why in the Sharia, if one is found guilty of a crime that warrants a serious penalty like amputation or death sentence, the judge in his wisdom will employ what is known as Shubha to cast doubt on the case in such a way that is not too obvious to the public and the accused, such that the accused will feel that he escaped punishment by a very slim chance.

If you have followed the Kano case, you will discover that the judge made it clear to the accused that he can take the case up to a court of appeal. That is an escape route even though not so apparent to the accused and the general public. The man is already remorseful and terrified, the pronouncement of death is no joke.
Islam is a merciful religion and its mercies know no boundaries. Many times when ignorant fools run their mouths, we deliberately allow them to have their time as it is entertaining to watch clowns clowning away thinking they have an argument against Islam. Poor souls.


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