Vol. 6, Issue 5 (2020)
Saving lives via application of Islamic alternative dispute resolution: A review of Maryam Sanda case
Author(s): Abdulkareem Azeez
Abstract: Crimes in most common law jurisdictions including Nigeria are considered as offences against the State with the victim of such crime having no say as to whether the accused be prosecuted. Once the commission of a crime is reported, the accused will be arrested after reasonable investigation and tried before a competent court of law. The State through the office of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) proffer a charge against the accused, arraign and prosecute him using the victim as the prosecution’s witness. And the power to discontinue such a case ironically lies not in the victim or his family but exclusively with the Attorney General of the federation or any of its agents. However, Islamic law provides a leeway for the victim’s family to accept diyya (Blood Money) from the accused or his family. This research is an attempt to address certain pertinent questions arising from Maryam Sanda’s case especially on the lacuna created by the criminal justice system in providing a better remedy to the victim’s family and most importantly to the child or children of the marriage where the offence is mariticide. And to explore the alternatives provided by Islamic law in cases of murder and the philosophy behind such provision.