Former Zamfara State Governor Ahmed Sani Yerima has shed light on his decision to introduce Sharia in the state during his tenure.
The former governor, during his speech on Friday, claimed that he had done nothing apart from the constitution and that he had not forced non-Muslims to practice the Sharia which he had introduced in 1999.
Naija News reports that Senator Yerima said this in a conversation with state house correspondents shortly after briefing President Muhammadu Buhari on his intention join the 2023 presidential race.
By justifying his actions, Yerima stressed that he is not a religious extremist but cannot deny that he is a Muslim and that he will die as a Muslim.
He added that he sent a proposal to the State House of Assembly which the legislators duly passed and he implemented it in accordance with the provisions of the Nigerian constitution regarding freedom of religion.
Yerima argued that it is out of ignorance that people think he acted against the constitution of Nigeria.
“On the question of Sharia, I am a Muslim and I say everywhere I go that I am a Muslim and that I want to die as a Muslim. As I said, I will fight the problem of ignorance and this is one of them. he said.
“People don’t know; many people are unaware that the constitution of Nigeria, section 38, has provided for freedom of religion, including the freedom to change one’s religion if desired, to practice alone or in community with others, in private or in Public.
“So as governor of the state, I followed the constitutional provision, prepared a law, sent it to the state assembly and they passed it and I implemented this. that the constitution of Nigeria has empowered me to do even in Zamfara State.
“I have never, ever demanded, asked or forced a Christian to follow the Islamic faith because I would have committed an unconstitutional act.
“So if I am elected, by the grace of God, I will be elected under the constitution and I will be sworn to protect and defend the constitution of Nigeria. I will never do anything unconstitutional.
Yerima also said that if elected president, he will focus on fighting insecurity and poverty.
On the issue of zoning, the presidential aspirant argued that Nigeria’s constitution allows any qualified person to stand for election, therefore zoning should not be used to choose leaders.
“That’s why you see people talking about the rotating presidency as if it’s a distribution of power. The constitution of Nigeria is very clear – every Nigerian is qualified to contest as long as he reaches the age prescribed for different positions.
“So every Nigerian is qualified as long as he follows the constitutional provisions of this country to stand for any office and aspire to any office in this country.”