An Islamic court has sentenced a Nigerian cleric to death by hanging for insulting the Prophet Muhammad in the northern city of Kano.
Abdul Nyass was convicted after a trial held in secret to avoid protests.
Five of his followers were also sentenced to death last year.
These are the first death sentences for blasphemy handed down by a Nigerian Sharia court – the sentence has been delivered for other offences such as adultery but none has been carried out.
Mr Nyass is a preacher at a local faction of the Tijaniya sect, founded in Senegal by Sheikh Ibrahim Niasse, who has a large following across West Africa.
He was reported to have said that “Niasse was bigger than Prophet Muhammad”, leading to violent protests in the city.
Kano has a predominately Muslim population and Islamic courts operate alongside secular courts.
Several states in northern Nigeria have introduced Sharia after the country returned to civilian rule in 1999.