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Ramadan: Islamic Police Arrests 11 Muslims in Kano for Eating

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Islamic Police, Hisbah
Officers of the Nigerian Islamic Police, Hisbah

The Islamic police, known as Hisbah, have apprehended 11 Muslims, including a woman selling groundnuts in Kano State for violating Ramadan fasting rules by eating during daylight hours.

The Hisbah spokesman, Lawal Fagge, reported that the individuals were released after swearing an oath to adhere to fasting and, in some cases, involving their relatives for monitoring. Fagge disclosed this information to the BBC on Tuesday, following the arrests.

“We got 11 persons on Tuesday including a lady selling groundnuts who was seen eating from her wares and some persons alerted us. The other 10 were men and were arrested across the city especially close to markets where a lot of activities happen”, he said.

Hisbah continues its annual search operations during Ramadan, with focus on eateries and markets. Non-Muslims are exempt, but the Hisbah emphasised actions would be taken against those who cook food for Muslims during fasting hours.

In a related incident on the same day, the Yobe State Hisbah Board arrested 14 individuals, including nine females and five males, for alleged involvement in immoral acts and illicit drug use. Commissioner of Religious Affairs and Ethnical Re-Orientation, Yusuf Umar affirmed that some suspects would face legal prosecution, while others would receive counseling from clerics.

The enforcement of Sharia alongside secular law in Kano and other Northern Nigerian states have been in place for over two decades. Ramadan is said to represent the month when the first verses of the Quran were revealed.

Fasting during this period is a fundamental practice observed by Muslims. Ramadan in 2024 is expected to last 30 days, which started on March 11 and concluding on April 9. Muslims are expected to refrain from eating, drinking, having sex and smoking during the daytime.

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