Sunday, April 29, 2012


30th April 2012

Catholic church worshippers in a lecture hall in Bayero University, Kano (BUK), were attacked by about six gunmen who threw bombs and fired automatic rifles, causing pandemonium. About fifteen people have been reported dead.  

Coming on the heels of the bomb attack in Kaduna two days earlier which left about six people dead, the attack inside Bayero University is one too many. Once again, we of the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) reiterate our unflinching condemnation of attacks on places of worship and worshippers. Such attacks symbolize total disrespect for the Supreme Creator and signpost an astounding manifestation of ignorance about the ways of God.

MURIC believes that those responsible for this horrendous crime have acted in contradistinction with the tenets of religion. There is therefore an urgent need for Nigerians to review their understanding of religion with a view to placing the latter in its proper perspective. We charge school authorities to place high premium on the study of religion. 

The attack at BUK exposes the ineptitude of the Nigerian security apparatus. This attack could have been prevented if those in charge had been visionary and imaginative. We charge the security agencies to be more alive to their responsibilities. Forward-looking protection manouvres coupled with properly coordinated intelligence gathering must be the focus of those in charge of our security. No loopholes must be allowed. In particular, all places used for worshipping by Christians in the North must be given full protection. In the same vein, security agencies must be on guard in places of worship in the South. 

We appeal to all stakeholders to exercise restraint. We urge the perpetrators of these attacks to lay down their weapons and embrace dialogue. For procrastinating on proposed talks with this violent group, MURIC holds the Federal Government responsible for this tragedy. Instead of listening to the voice of reason and creating an atmosphere conducive to ceasefire and genuine dialogue, Government has been threatening to eliminate Boko Haram 'before July'. The warning of well-meaning Nigerians that force alone could not guarantee peace in the present ugly situation was ignored. This official lackadaisical attitude is as condemnable as the bombing itself. Why is government wasting the lives of poor and innocent Nigerians?

MURIC charges the Jonathan administration to wake up from its deep slumber before this country goes under. The Nigerian leadership needs to understudy daily doses of dynamism being injected into certain progressive states by the governors. Nigeria seems to have situated in the centre what ought to have domiciled in a remote local government. That is why nothing is working. We jog the conscience of the ruling Peoples' Democratic Party (PDP) to show interest in the security of lives of ordinary Nigerians instead of seeking phantom secession in faraway State of Oshun. 

Professor Is-haq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

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