A certain Elijah Ode has been arrested for giving customers haircuts that “contradicted Islamic principles”.
He was arrested by the Kano State Hisbah Corps, a Sharia police notorious for enforcing “moral” laws, after two of his customers were seen with haircuts that “offended” the Islamic faith.
The arrest was made in the Sabongari area of Kano last Wednesday. The Islamic police arraigned Elijah on Tuesday and had him remanded in custody. He was reportedly charged with blasphemy and denied bail.
“He is only being innovative and to improve on his work, which he used to eke out a living for himself and pay his fees at his tertiary institution of study in Kano, where he sponsors himself,” a family member reportedly said.
“The case is already in the court of law at the wish of the aggrieved Muslims with the first session heard yesterday (Tuesday).
“But all efforts by the young barber’s lawyer to bail him proved abortive because of the claim that it is a major case and therefore not bailable.
“At the moment, the family has run out of hope, soliciting intercessory prayers as the reality of incarceration stares Elijah in the face.”
Elijah Ode is originally from Benue where activist Smith Akoko, who first brought the matter to the attention of Nigerians, also hailed from.
Elijah’s cousin, Sunday Ukenya, confirmed the incident to Akoko. It is not clear yet when his trial would resume.