Abba Moro, a Nigerian Senator representing Benue South Senatorial District in the National Assembly, has demanded the unconditional release of Elijah Odeh, a young barber from his constituency being held in Kano State over hairstyles.
In a statement by his media office in Abuja on Sunday, the senator said the barber was allegedly arrested for barbing different hairstyles on his customers, which was considered to be offensive to Islam.
According to Moro, Elijah, from Adum East, in the Obi Local Government Area of Benue State, was arrested a few days ago by a group of Muslims over claims that the hairstyle he designed on two of his customers was insulting to Islam and the Holy Prophet Mohammed (SAW).
The Senator said the young barber was currently being tried in Gyadi-Gyadi Magistrate’s Court sitting in Kano State.
He alleged that the man had been denied bail despite the intervention from the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom, and Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State.
Moro added that the arrest and continued incarceration of the young man was unacceptable and unconstitutional.
He said the action was an infringement on the young man’s rights to live and do business in any part of the country without molestation and harassment.
The Senator said, “None of my constituents will suffer unjustly anywhere, as long as I remain their Senator.
“I will also follow up on the case, with all the seriousness it deserves, until justice is served on Elijah, who I believe, has done nothing wrong by being creative and innovative.”
It will be recalled that the barber, who is also a student, was first arrested on January 15, 2021 and rearrested last Wednesday, January 27, after two of his customers were caught with hairstyles deemed blasphemous to the Islamic religion.
He was detained by Hisbah corps for allegedly giving his customers haircuts which ‘offend’ the Islamic faith in the Sabon Gari area of the state.