THE NON-APPLICABILITY OF ISLAMIC CRIMINAL LAWS ON FORNICATION AND ADULTERY IN NIGERIA: AN EXCUSE NOT ENOUGH FOR MUSLIM MALES AND FEMALES!

It is a clear fact that Nigeria is a secular State having not approved a particular religion/religious practices as State religion having regard to Section 10 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria-herein after referred to as the Constitution- though, the right to practise a religion of choice is guaranteed by the same Constitution (including International Charters such as the African Charter  on Human and People’s Rights, among others) to every citizen which is contained in section 38(1) of the Constitution. Nevertheless, it is also a notorious fact and the position of law that the criminal aspect of Islamic Law has not been applied and or legislated by Nigeria, except those States of Nigeria that have legislated some (or all) of the Islamic Criminal Laws as State laws passed into law through legislative processes as laws of the State. Also, the aspect of Islamic Laws having full force is the aspect of the Islamic Personal Law (except individuals utilize their rights to practice other Islamic laws as a freedom of expression guaranteed by section 38(1) of the Constitution (supra) such as: worship practices, etc.). This paper is of the respectful view and advice to Muslim males and females not to deviate from the path legislated for them and not to violate Allaah’s laws concerning fornication and adultery just because there is no such offence in Nigeria as fornication and adultery as those legislated and or punishable under the criminal laws/sanctions of Islamic laws, hence, this topic.

As an introduction to this topic, there was a question and a ruling on the question on islamweb.com which would be supplied here as it is useful for the purpose of this paper which goes thus

‘Question

A non-Muslim friend asked me how is it possible, in recent life, to avoid having relations with a girl before the marriage as long as there are many means to avoid pregnancy or diseases? I want to convince him the dangers of Zina.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

Zina (fornication or adultery) is a grave major sin. It is prohibited in all religions due to fatal diseases such as AIDS. It does not only bring down Allah’s wrath, but also causes crimes, generates hatred among people, spoils the chastity of the person and his/her lineage and so forth. Allah, the Exalted, has imposed a great punishment on those who commit Zina in this worldly life and in the Hereafter.

Allah Says (what means): {And those who do not invoke with Allah another deity or kill the soul which Allah has forbidden [to be killed], except by right, and do not commit unlawful sexual intercourse. And whoever should do that will meet a penalty. Multiplied for him is the punishment on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein humiliated – Except for those who repent, believe and do righteous work. For them Allah will replace their evil deeds with good. And ever is Allah Forgiving and Merciful.} [Quran 25: 68-70]

On the Night of Israa’ and Mi’raaj, as recorded in Saheeh Al-Bukhaari, the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) saw naked men and women on a building similar to a furnace, wide at the bottom and narrow at the top, and a fire kindling from the bottom. When the fire starts, they cry and come up; when it goes out, they return to their previous state. When the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) asked about them, the answer was: ‘They are those who committed Zina.’ They will be tortured in the same way till Resurrection.”

Allah warns us against committing Zina as He Says (what means): {And do not approach unlawful sexual intercourse. Indeed, it is ever an immorality and is evil as a way.} [Quran 17:32]

As for the punishment of Zina in the present life, if it is proved, an unmarried person is to be lashed one hundred times, and then, the man should be exiled for one year. This should be carried out by the Muslim ruler. As regards a married person who commits Zina, he should be stoned till death.

Allah Says (what means): {The [unmarried] woman or [unmarried] man found guilty of sexual intercourse – lash each one of them with a hundred lashes, and do not be taken by pity for them in the religion of Allah, if you should believe in Allah and the Last Day. And let a group of the believers witness their punishment.} [Quran 24: 2]

This punishment is for unmarried persons guilty of the above sin but if married persons commit it, the punishment is to stone them to death, according to Allah’s Law.

The Prophetic Hadeeth explained the above verse stating: “One hundred lashes and one year exile for a bachelor and a married one should be stoned (to death).” [Muslim, At-Tirmithi, Ibn Maajah]

As for your friend’s saying ‘How can I endure?’, we clearly state that whoever believes in Allah, the Final Day, the Reckoning and the punishment, Hellfire and Paradise, should have patience, fearing Allah and longing for His reward.

On the other hand, using medical condoms and so on does not change the Sharee’ah rulings for a believer. But, for a disbeliever, we are to do our best to convince him of Islam and belief since there will be no profit to convince him of the dangers of Zina as long as he is not a believer.

Therefore, dear brother, your first step is to convince him of Islam and the dangers of disbelief. Then, he – Allah willing – will automatically believe in the dangers of Zina.

Allah knows best.’. (Underlining is mine for emphasis).

From the above question and the answer provided, it is my humble belief that the laws on fornication and adultery have been catered for without the need for me to supply further authorities.

Furthermore and most worrisome is the way and manner some of our Muslim males and females get so used to getting closer (if not into) fornication and adultery! I admonish them to repent to Almighty Allaah and to heed warnings and to fear the calamities of such unlawful enjoyment in this world and in the hereafter! Some Muslim males and females now freely intermingle on the social-media leading to unwarranted chats and relationship! In fact, a righteous Muslim who would love to marry but fears Allaah in not moving close to fornication or adultery would find it very hard to win and or convince any of such females that he is interested in to marry without ‘dating’ or ‘courting’ her and or without (if not sexually attached to her i.e. by having sex with her) and without making fake and deceitful promises to her! Subhaanallaah (may Allaah be glorified)! This is very critical! Sexual relationship is getting rampant among some Muslim males and or females in Nigeria (Allaah knows best)! This development I got to know about in the cause of my search for a mathnaa (second wife to marry), which I am still in serious search for (though with prayers and patience and hoping in Allaah)! There have been many rejections due to various Un-islamic reasons whereas, some of these Muslim females fall easily into the hands of some males who do not fear Allaah or have no good intention for them! It is important for me to state this fact for the purpose understanding how bad the situation has become! Virginity is no more celebrated! Immorality is marked as a sign of exposure especially some of those so much entangled with the western world, whereas, the fact that you are educated should not make you to become immoral! Today, marriages breakdown easily without any regret! Materialisms and fake promises pervade marital relationships! The one who is righteous is seen as either a ‘fanatic’ or an ‘extremist’, just because he only fears to violate the laws of his Lord! Males and or females get so exposed to sexual relationship right from Junior Secondary School! This is likely one of the reasons why many males and or females do not think of marriage because they now have alternative of ‘boyfriend’ and ‘girlfriend’ (with sexual enjoyment), hence, the need not to even think of marriage early! Then, some females of this generation whom a righteous male considers to marry on a close proposal become exposed as having a secret partner already for years without necessarily being ready for marriage! These females would tell you ‘I have someone already’! or ‘at least, I have a choice’! These is encouraged by the fact that they have little or no knowledge about what awaits them as punishment for some of these unlawful acts that they commit daily except if they truly believe in Allaah, the Final Day, the Reckoning and the punishment, Hellfire and Paradise and except for those who repent, believe and do righteous work. For them Allah will replace their evil deeds with good. And ever is Allaah Forgiving and Merciful.} [Quran 25: 68-70] and they should therefore have patience, fearing Allah and longing for His reward.

Finally, I humbly admonish myself and my fellow Muslim males and females to truly believe in Allah, the Final Day, the Reckoning and the punishment, Hellfire and Paradise and for us to repent, believe (in Allaah) and to do righteous work. As then, for us Allah will replace our evil deeds with good and ever is Allaah Forgiving and Merciful.}. Weshould therefore have patience, fearing Allah and longing for His reward. May Almighty Allaah make righteous deeds easy for us to do and may He accept same from us with good rewards! Aamiin! Therefore, the non-applicability of Islmaic Criminal Laws on fornication and adultery in Nigeria should not be an excuse for Muslim males and females who believe in Allah, the Final Day, the Reckoning and the punishment, Hellfire and Paradise, to then freely (without regret) engage in fornication and adultery!

 

 

Email: hameed_ajibola@yahoo.com

 

 

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