Two Sentenced To Death Over Hanifa Abubakar Murder in Kano

On Thursday, the Kano State High Court condemned two people to death by hanging in connection with the murder of Hanifa Abubakar.

Due to their major contributions to the abduction and death of Hanifa Abubakar, 5, the court condemned Hashimu Isiyaku and Abdulmaliq Abubakar Tanko to death by hanging.


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Hashimu and Tanko, the two main suspects in the case, were found guilty of four offenses involving kidnapping, attempted kidnapping, concealment, and criminal conspiracy and sentenced to death.

The proprietor of the school Hanifa attended, Tanko, was paraded by the police in January 2022, during which he confessed to having killed the girl with rat poison and buried her in a shallow grave.

Meanwhile, Abdulmalik, alongside his accomplice, Isyaku, and Musa, were arraigned before the court, by the Kano State government, on five count charges bordering on criminal conspiracy, kidnapping, abetting, confinement and culpable homicide, contrary to section 97, 274, 277, 221 of the penal code.

The Judgment

Usman Na’abba, who handed down the verdict in the case, also gave Fatima Musa a two-year prison term.

Justice Na’abba noted that the defendants were convicted for four out of the five charges on the ground that the prosecution council proved their case beyond doubt.

The Judge, however, convicted Tanko to five years imprisonment, after finding him guilty on the four counts levelled against him, while Ishyaku was convicted for four years imprisonment (2 years each for conspiracy and concealment).

Fatima Musa, the third defendant, was given a two-year prison term despite just having been found guilty of attempted kidnapping and criminal conspiracy.

Before the judge handed down his ruling, Aisha Imam, the defense attorney and assistant director of the Legal Aid Council, pleaded for leniency for the defendants, urging the court to temper justice with mercy.

The Prosecution Counsel, led by the Kano State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Musa Lawan, responded to the Defence Counsel’s request for mercy by reminding the court that the alleged crime was both a henious criminal and a crime against humanity.

Lawan again reminded the court that the only justice and fairness that could be proportionate to the mother of the deceased (Hanifa) were the highest sentences for the accused.

The father, Malam Abubakar Abdulsalam, expressed his satisfaction that little Hanifa got justice in his response to the court’s decision to sentence the murderer, Tanko Abdulmalik, and his collaborator, Hashimu Ishyaku, to death by hanging.

Abubakar said, “I’m happy today that Hanifa, my daughter, has gotten justice.

“We appreciate everyone’s effort and that justice has been well served,” he added.


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