Nigerian humanist awaits formal charges

Updates in the case of Mubarak Bala

  • post Type / Action Alert
  • Date / 27 May 2020

One month on from Mubarak Bala’s detention, we continue to call for his immediate and unconditional release.

Mubarak Bala’s arrest and continued detention since 28 April 2020 has sparked both public and confidential efforts to secure his safe release.

Humanists International continues to pursue confidential lines of high-level diplomacy with several governments around the world. This information is highly sensitive and therefore cannot be shared publicly.

The case itself continues to develop slowly. While not all developments can be made public at this stage, it is understood that:

  • Bala’s whereabouts remain unknown
  • Bala has still not been granted access to his legal team
  • Bala was formally detained under the Cybercrimes Act (2015) at a hearing in a Kano Magistrate’s Court on 6 May 2020. Bala was not present at the hearing. A formal arraignment hearing is expected to take place in the coming weeks.
  • Bala’s legal team have filed a fundamental rights petition with the Abuja High Court asserting that Bala’s detention violates his rights to liberty, fair trial, freedom of thought and expression, and freedom of movement as enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution and international human rights law.

Humanists International Chief Executive Gary McLelland commented:

Gary McLelland, CEO of Humanists International

“We continue to do all that we can to monitor Mubarak’s situation, and to advocate for his release from detention. Working with our members, and governments around the world, we are continuing to liaise directly with Bala’s legal team about the way forward.

“Mubarak’s situation is changing daily, and I can assure you that we are working flat-out to ensure his safety. Much of our progress must remain confidential for the time being, and I know how frustrating that is. To find out how you can get involved and support Mubarak, please visit freemubarakbala.org<.”

Humanists International and its member organizations continue to advocate both publicly and behind the scenes on Mubarak Bala’s behalf.

To join the #FreeMubarakBala campaign, see:

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