Three sisters of the same parents are currently before a sharia court in Gusau, Zamfara State, for allegedly molesting a 22-year-old man in the town during Ramadan.
The three ladies are currently before the Higher Sharia Court, New Market, accused of molest and assault of the man, Abdulrahman Suleiman, two months ago while the man was on duty at the state Ministry of Women Affairs.
The suspects, whose ages were between 19 and 23 years, were Yahanatu Ibrahim, Wasila Hassan and Rukkaya Hassan. The prosecutor informed the court that they were all residing in the Government Reserved Area (GRA) of Gusau metropolis.
When the case came up on Thursday, the judge adjourned it till November 13 to allow more witnesses to testify.
He also said that the three defendants went to the man on that fateful day in the morning before the commencement of the daily Ramadan preaching session which was usually held in the ministry and demanded he should take them to an office.
However on getting to the said office, the prosecutor said the ladies forcefully pushed him inside the office and removed his trousers and one of the accused ladies had oral sex with him. Thereafter, the court was told that the two other accused persons later had sex with him.
When the judge, Alkali Sanusi Muhammad Magami, asked the accused persons about the incident, they all pleaded not guilty.
The judge then adjourned the case to August 27, while the suspects were granted bail.
When the case came up on August 27, an interesting dimension was brought into the matter when a witness, Muawiyya Salisu, told the court that the ladies only held his manhood and this made the young man to faint.
Salisu disclosed that the ladies came to the Ramadan lecture hall playing music on their handsets and the man asked them to switch-off their phones which they refused.
He said about 20 witnesses were expected to appear and testify in the court.
The judge, for the second time, adjourned the case to September 10. He also granted bail to the accused persons without conditions.
Under the strict Islamic law (sharia) being observed in the state, if the ladies unmarried were found guilty of molest, the penalty would be 80 strokes of the cane plus one year jail term for each of them. However, if the ladies were found to have assaulted the man, they could be fined and sentenced to not less than six months imprisonment.
However, the mother of the ladies, Hajia Salame Hassan (60), who expressed sadness about the incident, told the Saturday Tribune that she had never envisaged that at her age, she would not find comfort. “Comfort had eluded me. Everyday, I raise my hands up praying to God to bring peace to me and members of the household.”
Hajia Salame insisted that her daughters were innocent. According to her “some people who witnessed the incident told me that my daughters were victimised.”
She told the Saturday Tribune that one of the ladies had a suitor and because of the noise made over the incident, the man had decided to stop the relationship.
She disclosed that her neighbours were even making jest of her family, adding that “sometimes, I spent the whole day inside my room because of the shame of facing my neighbours. I have trained them well. They are all always indoors. I don’t allow them to mix freely with those I feel are of unquestionable character.”
Findings by the Saturday Tribune revealed that two of the accused, Yahannatu Hassan and Wasila Hassan, are students of the state School of Nursing, while Ruqquya is a student in one of the secondary schools in the state capital.
According to the mother, she would not give up until she sees her children all graduating from their respective schools. She told the Saturday Tribune that her only wish now is to see the end of this case in favour of the ladies.