This is the official blog of the Nigeria-based Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), a human rights organization which promotes, protects and projects the rights of Muslims. This group condemns terrorism and all acts of violence. Its motto is 'Dialogue, Not Violence'
Sunday, July 16, 2017
WHO IS AFRAID OF RETIRED CHRISTIAN MILITARY GENERALS?
WHO IS AFRAID OF RETIRED CHRISTIAN
Some retired military generals and Christian
elders under the aegis of the National Christian Elders Forum (NCEF) declared
on Thursday in Abuja that Nigeria was being Islamised. The retired generals included
Theophilus Danjuma, Joshua Dogonyaro and Zamani Lekwot while Elder Solomon
Asemota, Elder Moses Ihonde, Elder Shyngle Wigwe and Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife
were among the elders.
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) totally rejects this
allegation. It is false, baseless, deceptive, malicious and provocative.
Using Christian and
Islamic studies (CRK and IRK) which are in the current school curriculum as a
launching pad for its tirades on Muslims in the country stands logic on its
head because both Christian and Muslim leaders asked the Federal Government
under ex-President Jonathan to make the two subjects compulsory for students
who belong to their respective faiths.
However, we are not
surprised at this latest development because Christian leaders are simply
behaving to type. They have always been shouting wolves where there is none.
Warnings against the ‘Islamisation’ of Nigeria is now an old song and nobody is
interested any longer. The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and its
attack megaphones like NCEF are adept at subterfuge and their false alarms
usually come after they might have committed an evil act. It is diversionary
Come to think of it. Why is the new
false alarm coming just after the bloody massacre of an entire Fulani Muslim
population in Taraba State? NCEF feels frustrated that its plot to Christianise
Muslim children by using the old deceptive curriculum failed when government
introduced a policy which grants religious freedom to all. What is wrong if
government makes Christian Religious Knowledge compulsory
for Christian students while Islamic Religious Knowledge is also made compulsory
for Muslim students? How on earth does that translate to Islamising Nigeria?
NCEF is shouting blue murder because CAN’s plot of catching
Muslim children as ‘fishes’ through a deceptive curriculum has been floored. It
is a cardinal dogma of CAN that any child who lacks Christian moral training must end up as a
social outcast and a burden on society. They therefore seek to compel Muslim
children to take CRK and deny them the chance to study IRK. There is no
gainsaying the fact that researchers have long agreed that the colonial master
and later its ‘beloved son’ (CAN) used Western education as a tool of forceful
conversion of Muslim children.
We must also call the attention of the Federal and State
ministries of education to another grand plot of CAN which has been in
operation for long. Teachers of IRK are being cleverly diverted to teach other
subjects. Senior officials in the Ministry of Education who are Christians are
made to compromise their positions. They conspire with CAN to neutralize
teachers trained for IRK.
These teachers are not
allowed to teach IRK when employed. They are threatened with dismissal and
offered alternative subjects to secure their source of daily bread. Thus CAN
creates scarcity of IRK teachers by diverting experts in the field to other
subjects. On the other hand, Christian graduates of any subject under the sky
are given juicy offers to drop their core areas to teach CRK. This is how our
cunny neighbours who are now alleging Islamisation create scarcity by diversion
for IRK but ensure proliferation by the same diversion for CRK parri passu.
Our claims are verifiable and we charge the Federal
Ministry of Education in particular and the state ministries of education in
the South West to launch an investigation into this. Many graduates of Islamic
Studies who have been forcefully diverted to teach other subjects are ready to
come forward. Those clamouring for restructuring have something interesting
here. CAN has created a rot in the ministries of education all over the country
and restructuring must start from there.
Besides, what is this idea of using former military
generals to intimidate the country in an issue involving religion? When last
did Muslims use their own generals to make noise? Must we flex military muscle over
a civil matter? Why the emphasis on a statement “issued by retired military
generals and Christian leaders”? Are the generals there to represent the
Nigerian Army? To make what point? Who did this to CAN? The reference to war by
the group is an admission that they are already making secret plans to wage war
on Muslims. It must also be noted that the names of the army generals involved have
been linked with one crisis or another in the past and this is the danger.
Otherwise why the
assemblage of Christian war veterans in the form of army generals and why the
need for the emphasis on the military elements in the group? Why do Christian leaders always mobilize their
army generals? This attitude is suggestive of subtle intimidation and coercion.
Is there any connection between this surreptitious union and the South African
money-for-arms scandal which involved an aircraft belonging to Ayo Oritsejafor,
former CAN president? Also, can any sane mind rationalize the involvement of Dr.
Chukwuemeka Ezeife in this group? How does he fit in for crying out loud? So
how Northern is the Northern Christian Elders Forum?
We declare clearly, categorically and unequivocally that
Nigerian Muslims are not in any way moved by this subtle threat. Who is afraid
of the Northern Christian Elders Forum? Count Nigerian Muslims out. We get the
message but we dismiss it as the usual ranting of incorrigibly belligerent
neighbours. Our avowed role in this country as tutored by our leaders is to
work for peace, to pray for progress and to search for the stability of the
Instead of utilizing
precious times on hard work that will put bread on the tables of Nigerians, CAN
leadership has misled Nigerian Christians into superfluous religiousity,
leading to a situation where a large proportion of the Nigerian population
spends 17 hours daily searching for an ever elusive and perpetually fictitious
Every Christian civil
servant or businessman in Nigeria today is being indoctrinated and made to
believe that not only must he become a pastor, he must also own a church, a
situation which has led to unbearable noise pollution as churches spring up in
the most unlikely places: tiny 2 x 2 shops with huge signboards and gargantuan
loud speakers. Yet morality continues to sink to a very low ebb.
MURIC charges the
Nigerian military to caution its retired Christian generals. They must desist
from brandishing their expired medals in our faces. Something has gone terribly
wrong with their pre-retirement briefings. We appeal to CAN to allow Nigerians
to work together as compatriots and without religious bias. Only thus can we
forge a truly genuine nation where rewards for citizens are based on potentials
and performance rather than affiliation to a church, a mosque or a tribe. Allow
merit to be the deciding factor.
Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)