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Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Emir of Kano’s musician Naziru Ahmed charged for setting up studio at home

A popular Nigerian musician has been charged with illegally releasing songs and setting up a studio in his house.

Naziru Ahmad was arrested by police at his home in Kano city on Wednesday evening.

He appeared in court on Thursday and was granted bail with a number of conditions. He must surrender his passport, submit three guarantors and deposit the equivalent of $1,400 (£1,100).

Ahmad is the latest performer to be detained by the authorities in an apparent crackdown on artists who are seen as critical of the state administration.

Critics say the arrest is politically motivated because of the singer’s close ties with the Emir of Kano, Muhammad Sanusi II, who has fallen out with the governor of the state.

Ahmad is chief musician in the emir’s court.

Several other musicians have recently been jailed for allegedly defaming the governor, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, in their songs.

The crackdown is causing concern in northern Nigeria’s large entertainment industry which is primarily based in Kano, with artists saying freedom of speech is under threat.

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