Sunday, July 15, 2018

STOP BLAMING BUHARI FOR KILLINGS


16th July, 2018
PRESS RELEASE:
STOP BLAMING BUHARI FOR KILLINGS

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has advised Nigerians to stop blaming President Muhammadu Buhari for killings around the country. In a statement released on Monday and signed by the leader of the group, Ishaq Akintola, the association blamed politicians, tribal bigots and a section of the media on the spread of wrong information about killings around the country.        

According to MURIC, “It is unfair to blame Buhari for our inability to stop killings. Security is a collective responsibility particularly on the different arms of government: the executive, the judiciary and the legislature. The press as the Fourth Estate of the Realm also has a vital role to play there. So are the citizens.

“In the case of Nigeria today, instead of cooperating with the executive, our legislature is an open enemy even in a sensitive matter like the security of lives and properties. For example, as killings occur on a daily basis, Buhari made a move in April 2018 to procure more weapons to fight insecurity but a hostile Senate turned down the request.

“National Assembly (NASS) made so much fuss about Buhari’s request for $1 billion from the Consolidated Revenue Fund, threatening to impeach him for approving its release without its consent. The same self-serving legislature delayed the budget for seven months just to get back at the executive and of course no money can be released before the Appropriation Act is signed into law.

“Yet the first on the list of twelve resolutions of the NASS issued on 5th June, 2018 was that ‘The Security Agencies must be given marching orders to curtail the sustained killings of Nigerians across the country and protect life and properties of Nigerians’. This is grossly unfair. NASS also declined to accede to Buhari’s request to approve the sum of $496 million for the procurement of Super Tucano aircfraft from the United States. Yet Nigerians failed in their duty to question the right of their lawmakers to endanger their lives.

“Apart from the problem of herders and farmers, the recent revelation by Hon. Ahmed Maje that certain politicians sponsored killers and assssins who were trained in Israel has completely absolved President Muhammadu Buhari in the killings. Weapons for the clandestine operations were smuggled into the country through our porous boarders. It was only a few containers which were seized by customs that we heard of. Many others were safely delivered.

MURIC urged Nigerians to adopt a holistic approach to killings occurring in the country. Citing the example of the recent communal clash which claimed more than 200 lives in the South East, the Islamic human rights organization argued that nobody in his right senses would blame the executive for such criminal inclination among the populace. It also insisted that the killings were not new as more than 1,000 Muslims were massacred, roasted and eaten up in cannibal style by the Berom Christian militia of Plateau state in 2001. These areas should have been properly covered by the Nigerian media.

“Ours is not an isolated case but we are behaving as if Nigeria is an island. Farmer-herder clashes are common everywhere, particularly in West Africa. Take Ghana as an example. Earlier this year, cattle rustlers invaded farmlands in Ashanti, Volta, Brong Ahafo and the Eastern regions leading to killings and the destruction of farms. But Ghanaians did not crucify their president because of the clashes. To solve this problem, Ghana established its first cattle ranch last week at Afram Plains in the eastern region. It plans to establish more in the Volta and Ashanti regions.

“It is time to face realities. We must borrow a leaf from Ghana. That country is as multi-religious and multi-cultural as Nigeria. Herders and farmers clashes can be avoided if we objectively consider the recommendation for the establishment of ranches. Ghanaian President Akufo-Addo had in March this year expressed his administration’s intention to establish cattle ranches to curb the menace of herders. He has succeeded in doing that because Ghanaians did not look at his tribe or religion. They considered what will benefit them.

“Our problems in this country are political shenaniganism, acrobatic religiousity and ethnic demagoguery. Instead of treating the tangentials, we always go for the peripheral. We amplify sentimental aspects and trivialize the real issues. Instead of considering the antecedent of a leader, we are more interested in his tribe and religion. We treat symptoms but we leave the real ailment. How then can we move forward as a people? Don’t ask who did this to Nigeria because we are the architects of our own woes”.


MURIC lamented the failure of the elites and the academic community to liberate themselves from ethnic jingoism. Quoting Dr. Chuba Okadigbo, Akintola said, “The late Dr. Chuba Okadigbo said it all, ‘If you are emotionally attached to your tribe, religion or political leaning to the point that truth and justice become secondary considerations, your education is useless. Your exposure is useless. If you cannot reason beyond petty considerations, you are a liability to mankind’.


“In conclusion, Nigerian lawmakers should take the lion share of the blame, followed by the citizens and the media. They should all accept their culpability in this peculiar mess instead of blaming the executive since the latter has done what is humanly possible within the law”.


Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Director,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

Thursday, July 12, 2018

ELEKA’S DEPUTY IS A CHRISTIAN


12th July, 2018
PRESS RELEASE:
ELEKA’S DEPUTY IS A CHRISTIAN

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has disclosed that it is in possession of a document which confirms that the deputy governorship candidate of Professor Olusola Eleka is a Christian, not a Muslim as Nigerians were made to believe.

In a press release dated 12th July, 2018 and signed by its director and founder, the human rights organization revealed that although Eleka’s running mate, Mr. Deji Hakeem Ogunsakin was born into a Muslim family, he converted to Christianity long ago and he is now a member of the Redeemed Christian Church of God.

“We have the proof. We have a copy of a letter addressed to Governor Ayodele Fayose thanking him for picking a member of the Christian denomination. This letter was printed on the letter-head of the Victory Chapel parish situated on Maiye Ogundana Street, Magodo, Shangisha, Lagos. It was duly signed by the pastor of the parish, Bayo Olugbemi.   

“There is nothing wrong with being a Christian or a Muslim. There is also nothing wrong with voting for a Christian or Muslim candidate. But it is most shameful and outrageously dishonourable to deceive the public by hiding under the canopy of one religion to gain access to a public post knowing fully well that you are not what you claim to be. It is preposterous, disgusting and repulsive. Can we trust such people with the people’s mandate? Fayose has stolen the portion of Muslims in our common patrimony. It is an act of bad faith. It is dishonesty of the highest order.

“Nigerians can now see where Fayose is coming from and what he stands for. Ekiti people entered one chance the day Fayose was elected. This man is Mr. Jekyll and Hyde. You can never trust him. He perfected the plan to deceive Muslims in his state long ago. We remember how he appeared at the Id ground wearing turban on Salah day, complete with a rosary! But it was a grand display preparatory to this grand deceit. It will be remembered that we issued a statement at the time warning Ekiti Muslims that he was trying to deceive them. We are now vindicated. From now on, any Muslim who hobnobs with Fayose is on his own.
    
“The wind has blown. We have seen the ruff of the hen. Fayose’s trick has been uncovered. His days are numbered. Everyday is for the thief but just one day is for the owner. Fayose can run but he cannot hide. If he runs to the sea, the sea will be boiling. If he runs to the hills, the hills will be melting in a volcanic eruption. This man is a special study in Chamberlain’s five evils: brute force, bad faith, injustice, oppression and persecution”.

MURIC recalled its allegations against Governor Peter Ayodele Fayose who completely marginalized Muslims of his state by appointing no single Muslim as a commissioner or permanent secretary throughout his tenure.

“This man has shortchanged Ekiti Muslims. The only ‘Muslim’ good enough for Fayose is the one who converted to Christianity a long time ago. Muslims in Ekiti should therefore ‘shine their eyes’.  

“We remind Fayose and his cohots of the words of Abraham Lincoln who said, ‘You can fool some of the people some of the time but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time’. We warned ekiti Muslims when Fayose picked his ‘Muslim’ deputy for Eleka. We knew he had something up his sleeve. But now the game is up.

“Finally, we charge Ekiti Muslims to remember the hadith of the Prophet (Peace be upon him) ‘The signs of a hypocrite are three: he lies when he speaks; he reneges when he makes a pledge and he betrays when people trust him’. We must equally remember the words of Randal Terry ‘Fool me once, shame on you but fool me a second time, shame on me’.

“Fayose fooled you with his turban on Salah day, he is trying to fool you a second time with Eleka’s deputy whom he presented to you as a Muslim and you rejoiced. Will you allow him to fool you this second time? We leave you with another hadith of the Prophet (PBUH), ‘Wisdom is the property of Muslims’. We affirm that the freedom to choose folly is cheap, the will to be on the side of wisdom is worth a king’s ransom”

Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Director,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

MURIC COMMENDS LAW SCHOOL FOR CALLING FIRDAUS TO BAR


11th July, 2018
PRESS RELEASE:
MURIC COMMENDS LAW SCHOOL FOR CALLING FIRDAUS TO BAR

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has hailed the Nigerian Law School, the Body of Benchers and the Council of Legal Education for deeming it right to grant redress by calling Amasa Firdaus to bar with her hijab.

In a press statement signed by its director and founder, Professor Ishaq Akintola, the group said the Nigerian Law School has succeeded in restoring the confidence of Nigerian Muslims in legal education by giving recognition to the identity of the Muslim person.

The Nigerian Law School called Amasa Firdaus to bar yesterday, Tuesday 10th July, 2018. She was allowed to wear her hijab as she joined another 1,550 students with 11 others. Firdausa Amasa had earlier been denied entry into the hall for the ceremony in December 2017. The denial attracted a Tsunami of criticisms and the attempt by the House of Representatives to intervene via public hearing was truncated by a court injunction.

MURIC appealed to the authorities to allow other female Muslim students who elect to wear hijab below their wigs in future call to bar ceremonies. The organization argued that Muslims cannot be fully integrated into all aspects of Nigerian life unless authorities make inclusiveness a cardinal principle in their policies, rules and regulations.

MURIC also commended the House of Representatives for its quick intervention in the Law School hijab saga. The association lauded all Islamic organisations which showed interest in the struggle to liberate the Nigerian Muslim woman from the shackles of neo-colonialism as epitomized by the Amasa Firdaus phenomenon.

“In particular, we treasure the advice, logistic and diplomatic support provided by the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs under the able, visionary and dynamic leadership of the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III. Equally praise-worthy are millions of Muslim youths who heeded our appeal for calm and therefore avoided public demonstrations over the Law School hijab imbroglio. This is indubitable evidence that MURIC’s efforts at re-engineering Muslim youths towards non-violence is yielding fruits.  

“To cap the edifice, we salute Amasa Firdaus. This is our heroine and our ambassador extra-ordinary. She is the game changer who successfully challenged an unjust status quo. Her name must be written in letters of gold when the history of the liberation struggle of Nigerian Muslims in a heavily Christianised society is finally chronicled.

“We doff our hats for her father, Alhaji Abdullahi Amasa, for sacrificing so much for a cause in which he believes. His preference for obeying Almighty Allah instead of pleasing ordinary mortals and his choice of al-Akhirah (the Hereafter) over and above this ephemeral world gave birth to the resilience manifested by his daughter.

“In conclusion, we urge female Muslim law students who are already accustomed to using hijab to continuing wearing it without nursing any fear of persecution. Hijab is an Allah-given fundamental human right of every Muslim woman. Our hijab is our right and our right is our right. We assure Nigerian Muslim women of unflinching solidarity and full support of Nigerian Muslims.

“Nonetheless, we appeal to Muslims throughout the country to be humble in victory, to seek no vengeance, to avoid issuing provocative statements and to pray for a brilliant and successful law carreer for Amasa Firdaus”.

Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Director,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)