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We think the death penalty for adultery is contrary to the Nigerian constitution

We think that death by stoning is contrary to international treaties against torture

which Nigeria has ratified. We think that death by stoning is degrading human treatment

 

 

Nigeria Acquits Woman Sentenced to Stoning Death

By Todd Pitman

 

KATSINA, Nigeria (Sept. 25) - An Islamic appeals court Thursday threw out the case of a Nigerian woman sentenced to death by stoning for committing adultery, a case that sharpened the divide between Muslims and Christians in Africa's most populous country.

Amina Lawal would have been the first woman stoned to death since 12 northern states began adopting strict Islamic law, or Shariah, in 1999. Four of five judges on the court voted to overturn the verdict, citing procedural errors in her original trial.

Wrapped in a light orange veil, her eyes downcast, Lawal cradled her nearly 2-year-old daughter as the court announced its decision. Police and lawyers hustled her away afterward. ''It's a victory for law. It's a victory for justice,'' said defense attorney Hauwa Ibrahim. ''And it's a victory for what we stand for - dignity and fundamental human rights.''

An Islamic court first convicted Lawal, 32, in March 2002 after the birth of her daughter two years after she divorced her husband. Judges rejected Lawal's first appeal five months later. Prosecutors, who argued Lawal's child was living proof she committed adultery, said they were satisfied with the verdict but had 30 days to appeal. The verdict drew international condemnation. The government of President Olusegun Obasanjo called for Lawal's life to be spared, and Brazil offered her asylum.

The Islamic appeals panel ruled the conviction couldn't stand because Lawal wasn't given enough time to understand the charges against her; only one judge, instead of the required three, presided at her trial; and she was not caught in the act of sex out of wedlock. In the sole dissenting opinion, Judge Sule Sada said Lawal had confessed to the crime and the conviction should stand. But the defense had argued that the court should reject Lawal's confession because no lawyers were present when she made it.

The introduction of strict Islamic law in a dozen northern states has triggered deadly clashes between Christians and Muslims. Five people, including Lawal, have been sentenced to death by stoning. Three have had their convictions overturned. ''We think the death penalty for adultery is contrary to the Nigerian constitution,'' said Francois Cantier, a lawyer with French group Avocats Sans Frontieres, or Lawyers Without Borders, who was advising the defense. ''We think that death by stoning is contrary to international treaties against torture which Nigeria has ratified. We think that death by stoning is degrading human treatment.''

Also under Shariah, one man has been hanged for killing a woman and her two children and Muslim authorities have amputated the hands of three people for stealing. Many Muslims in the predominantly Islamic north have welcomed Shariah, saying it's a key part of their religion and discourages crime. Lead defense lawyer Aliyu Musa Yawuri said Lawal - a poor, uneducated woman from a rural family - didn't understand the charges against her at the time.

Lawal has identified her alleged sexual partner, Yahaya Mohammed, and said he promised to marry her. Mohammed, who would also have faced death by stoning denied any wrongdoing and was acquitted for lack of evidence. Lawal is the second Nigerian woman to be condemned to death for having sex out of wedlock under Islamic law. The first, Safiya Hussaini, had her sentence overturned on appeal in March - the same time that Lawal was convicted.

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Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo

Assures the World: Nigerians 

Won't Be Stoned for Adultery
(Tuesday, October, 2002)

LAGOS (Reuters) -  gave assurances on Tuesday that the country's higher appeal courts would quash the death-by-stoning sentences for adultery passed by Islamic courts. Obasanjo said in a radio and television broadcast to mark Nigeria's 42nd independence anniversary that a 31-year-old mother, Amina Lawal Kurami, and a couple condemned to death by Muslim courts can launch appeals at the Supreme Court where they will be guaranteed justice.

"We have never entertained doubts that whatever verdict a lower court may give, the appellate courts will ensure that justice is done," he said. "We fully understand the concerns of Nigerians and friends of Nigeria, but we cannot imagine or envision a Nigerian being stoned to death," Obasanjo said. "It has never happened. And may it never happen."

Stoning as punishment for sex crimes had drawn a barrage of international criticism since August when a sharia Court of Appeals in the northern state of Katsina confirmed the death sentence on Kurami.

Obasanjo's assurance came a week after former U.S. President Bill Clinton and Australian Prime Minister John Howard joined the international pressure on Nigeria to overturn the death verdict on Kurami.

Kurami was condemned to death in March by a lower court in Katsina, which like more than a dozen others in northern Nigeria has adopted the strict Islamic sharia law. She was granted a two-year reprieve to wean her daughter. now nine months old, and would not be stoned until 2004. Her lawyers said they have appealed to a higher court.

Kurami is the second woman to be sentenced to death for adultery since 2000, when sharia law was first adopted in Nigeria. In March, an appeals court in northwestern Sokoto state quashed a similar sentence on Safiya Hussaini Tungar-Tudu after worldwide appeals for clemency. She was made an honorary citizen of Rome in September.

In August, another Islamic court in central Niger state sentenced a pregnant woman and her lover to be stoned to death after convicting them of adultery. The adoption of sharia law has polarised Nigeria, Africa's most populous country, whose population of more than 120 million is almost evenly divided between Muslims and Christians. More than 3,000 people have died in religious clashes in the past two years in the traditionally secular west African nation.

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AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

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#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter

Non-fiction

#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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1493: Uncovering the New World Columbus Created

By Charles C. Mann

I’m a big fan of Charles Mann’s previous book 1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus, in which he provides a sweeping and provocative examination of North and South America prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus. It’s exhaustively researched but so wonderfully written that it’s anything but exhausting to read. With his follow-up, 1493, Mann has taken it to a new, truly global level. Building on the groundbreaking work of Alfred Crosby (author of The Columbian Exchange and, I’m proud to say, a fellow Nantucketer), Mann has written nothing less than the story of our world: how a planet of what were once several autonomous continents is quickly becoming a single, “globalized” entity.

Mann not only talked to countless scientists and researchers; he visited the places he writes about, and as a consequence, the book has a marvelously wide-ranging yet personal feel as we follow Mann from one far-flung corner of the world to the next. And always, the prose is masterful. In telling the improbable story of how Spanish and Chinese cultures collided in the Philippines in the sixteenth century, he takes us to the island of Mindoro whose “southern coast consists of a number of small bays, one next to another like tooth marks in an apple.” We learn how the spread of malaria, the potato, tobacco, guano, rubber plants, and sugar cane have disrupted and convulsed the planet and will continue to do so until we are finally living on one integrated or at least close-to-integrated Earth. Whether or not the human instigators of all this remarkable change will survive the process they helped to initiate more than five hundred years ago remains, Mann suggests in this monumental and revelatory book, an open question.

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The Persistence of the Color Line

Racial Politics and the Obama Presidency

By Randall Kennedy

Among the best things about The Persistence of the Color Line is watching Mr. Kennedy hash through the positions about Mr. Obama staked out by black commentators on the left and right, from Stanley Crouch and Cornel West to Juan Williams and Tavis Smiley. He can be pointed. Noting the way Mr. Smiley consistently “voiced skepticism regarding whether blacks should back Obama” . . .

The finest chapter in The Persistence of the Color Line is so resonant, and so personal, it could nearly be the basis for a book of its own. That chapter is titled “Reverend Wright and My Father: Reflections on Blacks and Patriotism.”  Recalling some of the criticisms of America’s past made by Mr. Obama’s former pastor, Mr. Kennedy writes with feeling about his own father, who put each of his three of his children through Princeton but who “never forgave American society for its racist mistreatment of him and those whom he most loved.”  His father distrusted the police, who had frequently called him “boy,” and rejected patriotism. Mr. Kennedy’s father “relished Muhammad Ali’s quip that the Vietcong had never called him ‘nigger.’ ” The author places his father, and Mr. Wright, in sympathetic historical light.

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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Related files: Save Amina From Death by Stoning