Auschwitz Memorial director offers to serve sentence for Nigeria ‘blasphemy’ boy

The director of the Auschwitz Memorial in Poland has offered to serve the sentence of a 13-year-old Nigerian boy given 10 years in jail for blasphemy.
Dr Piotr Cywinski said he and another 119 volunteers from all over the world would each serve a month in prison.
The offer was made in a letter to Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari.
The boy was convicted by an Islamic court of making uncomplimentary remarks about God during an argument with a friend in Kano state in August.
Kano is one of 12 Nigerian states practising the Sharia legal system alongside the country’s secular laws.
Muslims form the majority in the north of the country.

The UN children’s agency Unicef has called on the Nigerian authorities to urgently review the court’s decision.

What did the the Auschwitz Memorial’s director say?

In the letter, Dr Cywinski wrote he was ready to share part of the boy’s sentence.
“Regardless of what he said, he cannot be treated as fully aware and responsible, given his age.
“He should not be subjected to the loss of the entirety of his youth, be deprived of opportunities, and stigmatized physically, emotionally, and educationally for the rest of his life.
“However, if it turns out that the words of this child absolutely require 120 months of imprisonment, and even you are not able to change that, I suggest that in place of the child, 120 adult volunteers from all over the world, gathered by us – myself personally among them – should each serve a month in a Nigerian prison.
“In total, the price for the child’s transgression will be the same, and we will all avoid the worst,” Dr Cywinski wrote.
The Nigerian president has so far made no public comments on the issue.
The Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum is situated on the site of the former Nazi concentration camp in Poland where at least 1.1 million people were systematically murdered. Almost one million were Jews.


Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *