Monday, October 6, 2014


7th October, 2014

Our office has been inundated with requests for the clarification of a rumour currently going viral about a presidential candidate of the All Progressives Party (APC) who ‘plans’ to convert to Christianity in order to win the 2015 presidential election. The candidate was alleged to have said, “I can become a Christian if necessary so as to rule Nigeria”.  This rumour is being spread on facebook in Hausa language.

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) wishes to debunk this wicked propaganda. It is false, baseless, malicious and calculated not only to tarnish the image of the Muslim candidate but also to destroy his chance at the polls. It is total balderdash.  

The rumour is obviously a dirty political gimmick which could only have been resorted to by the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) in its desperation to cling to power at all cost. Knowing that it is sacriledge in Islam for a Muslim to desert his faith, PDP intends to paint the Muslim candidate as extremely desperate, so desperate that he was ready to dump Islam for Christianity.

The calculation is that by selling this wicked dummy, the candidate would lose his teeming Muslim supporters. It is an attempt at eliminating a political opponent by subterfuge. It is demeaning, insulting and ridiculous. It is infra dignitatem.

MURIC is aware of at least three presidential candidates in the APC, viz: former Vice President Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, Governor Musa Kwankwaso of Kano and former head of state Gen. (rtd) Muhammadu Buhari. We affirm that all three Muslim candidates are fine gentlemen and good Muslims who cannot contemplate the idea of leaving Islam for any other religion.

MURIC again warns the ruling party to desist from demonising Islam. Nigerian Muslims have no anointed political party. Neither does MURIC, which is no more than a non-violent, dialogue-committed Islamic human rights organization promoting Allah-given and fundamental human rights of Muslims and other Nigerians. We advocate voting based on conviction about candidates’ capabilities, not along religious lines. We also wish to remind the PDP in particular and Nigerians in general that Muslims exist as members in all political parties, the PDP inclusive.

We therefore advise the ruling party to stop playing religious politics. If the PDP has mortgaged the franchise of its members nationwide by imposing President Jonathan as its sole candidate, it should not attempt the ‘elimination by substitution’ trick on its most feared candidate in the opposition party.

Finally, MURIC advises APC leaders not to commit the same political blunder like the ruling party. All candidates must be given a level playing field during the primaries while no single religion must occupy the two main slots as presidential candidate and the running mate.

Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

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