Thirty-six hours after, President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday finally reacted to the gruesome lynching and burning of Miss Deborah Samuel, a second year Home Economics student of the Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto by Muslim Fundamentalists.
Although President Buhari condemned the killing, he nonetheless urged religious and community leaders to call citizens’ attention to the need to exercise the right to freedom of speech responsibly.
Buhari reacted through a series of tweets titled: State House Press Release: President Buhari reacts to Sokoto Killing linked to alleged blasphemy, says violence does not solve problems.”
According to the statement posted on the official Federal Government Twitter handle, Presidency Nigeria @NGRPresident, “President @MBuhari strongly condemns the resort to self-help by the mob in sokoto, resulting in violence, destruction and killing of a second year student of Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, Deborah Samuel following an allegation that she had blasphemed Muhammad (SAW), the Prophet of Islam on Thursday.
“President Buhari said the news of the killing of the young lady by fellow students was a matter of concern and demanded an impartial, extensive probe into all that happened before and during the incident.
“The President noted that Muslims all over the world demand respect for the Holy Prophets, incl Isah (Alaihissalaam, Jesus Christ) & Muhammad (SAW) but where transgressions occur, as alleged to be the case in this instance, the law does not allow anyone take matters into their hands.
“Moreover, religious leaders preach that it is not for the believer to judge the actions of another person. The constituted authority must be allowed to deal with such matters when they arise.
“No person has the right to take the law in his or her own hands in this country. Violence has and never will solve any problem.”
Buhari also directed the Ministries of Information and Culture, Police Affairs and that of Communications and Digital Economy to work with GSM providers and Tech companies to help contain the spread of false and inflammatory information through social media.
“The President extended the nation’s condolences to the family of the deceased student and wished all those injured a quick recovery.
He commended the immediate response to the incident by the Sokoto State Government and urged religious and community leaders to call citizens’ attention to the need to exercise the right to freedom of speech responsibly,” the statement further read.
“President Buhari called for tempered comments by the media and calm among the general population while investigation is ongoing to find out the remote and immediate causes of the incident.”