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Crowds chanted “Allahu Akbar” as bulldozers in Nigeria crushed the prohibited substance in the sharia state

A grand total of 3,873,163 bottles of mostly beer and other alcoholic beverages were destroyed on Wednesday as religious police in the northern Nigerian city of Kano, and state of the same name, intensified their crackdown on booze.

The alcohol, which is a prohibited substance in the predominantly Muslim region, was offloaded by members of the sharia police, called the Hisbah, at an open space in Tudun Kalebawa village.

As bulldozers rolled over the bottles, a crowd, which included religious police officials and government members, cheered and chanted “Allahu Akbar” (God is Great).

“Kano is a sharia state and the sale, consumption and possession of alcoholic substances are prohibited in the state,” Haruna Ibn Sina, the head of Hisbah, said at the ceremony. “This is a demonstration that we are winning the war against drug abuse and all forms of intoxicants in Kano,” he added.

The Hisbah proceeded to set fire to the remnants. According to villagers, the blaze burned throughout the night.

The sharia police are tasked with the maintaining Islamic law in the state, which borders regions racked by jihadist insurgencies. Wednesday’s haul comes as the Hisbah embark on an intensified crackdown against the consumption of illegal substances.

The booze had been intercepted over a number of months by the Hisbah as traders and other citizens smuggled beers and other drinks into the region from the mainly Christian south.

“Hisbah personnel should maintain the tempo as miscreants had devised new tactics of smuggling beer and hard drugs into the state,” Governor Abdullahi Ganjude said, according to local news.

After the fall of the dictatorship and the return to civil law, Kano, along with other states in the Muslim north, reintroduced sharia law. The sale and consumption of alcohol is punishable by 80 lashes with a horsewhip.

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