Friday, December 3, 2021

PLANNED INVASION OF IWO: MURIC COMMENDS OYETOLA

 

4th December, 2021

PRESS RELEASE :

PLANNED INVASION OF IWO: MURIC COMMENDS OYETOLA 

                                   

The leader of the Traditional Religion Worshippers Association (TRWASO), Dr. Oluseyi Atanda, has called off the group’s planned invasion of Iwo in Osun State. The group had planned to demand the removal of the Oluwo of Iwo, Oba Abdul Rasheed Akanbi for what it called derogatory remarks about its deities. According to the group, the call off was occasioned by the intervention of the state governor, Alhaji Isiaka Gboyega Oyetola (https://punchng.com/osun-traditionalists-shelve-march-on-iwo-as-oyetola-intervenes/?utm_source=telegram&utm_medium=social).

 

 

Meanwhile the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) had risen to the defence of the Oluwo of Iwo. MURIC accused the traditionalists of attempting to coerce the Muslim king into submitting to participate in traditional rituals. MURIC told the traditionalists to take their protest to Oshogbo which is the seat of government.

 

 

The Islamic human rights group also called on the state government to call the traditionalists to order as the planned invasion would be an act of aggression and a manifestation of lack of respect for the rule of law.

 

 

However, in a statement issued on Saturday, 4th December, 2021, MURIC commended Governor Oyetola, the State Police Command and the Department of State Services (DSS), Osun State, for nipping the planned invasion in the bud. The statement was signed by the organisation’s director, Professor Ishaq Akintola.

 

 

MURIC’s statement reads inter alia :

 

“We commend the state governor, Alhaji Isiaka Gboyega Oyetola, the State Police Command and the Department of State Services (DSS), Osun State, for nipping the planned invasion in the bud. The traditionalists would have set an ugly precedent in the annals of Yoruba history. This prompt action shows beyond any reasonable doubt that the Oyetola administration is working and it is conscious of its responsibilities.

 

 

“For the avoidance of doubts, we will like to place it on record that MURIC respects the right of others to worship what they like. As a human rights group, we have never attempted to stop Christians or traditionalists from their ways of life. Anyone who has evidence to the contrary should produce it now.

 

 

“But at the same time, we will not stand akimbo while people of other religions attempt to intimidate Muslims by encroaching on their freedom to worship and liberty to ‘manifest’. As law abiding citizens and apostles of dialogue, we will always use every legitimate means at our disposal to check the excesses of such people.

 

 

“We call for peaceful coexistence in Yorubaland in particular and Nigeria in general. No part of Nigeria can develop in an atmosphere of intolerance, rancour and distrust. Let us learn to live and let live. But most especially, let us respect the rule of law at all times. We must desist from using threat, blackmail or outright violence to settle our differences.”  

 

 

Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Director, 

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

 

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

MURIC TO CAN : YOU CAN’T FOOL THE US

 

1st December, 2021

PRESS RELEASE :

MURIC TO CAN : YOU CAN’T FOOL THE US  

                                   

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has told the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) that it cannot fool the United States. This followed CAN’s recent rejection of the delisting of Nigeria by the US as one of the ‘Countries of Particular Concern’ on the issue of religious freedom.

 

 

MURIC’s comment on the development came on Wednesday, 1st December, 2021 via its director, Professor Ishaq Akintola.

 

 

“The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) last week rejected the delisting of Nigeria by the United States as one of the ‘Countries of Particular Concern’ on the issue of religious freedom. In short, CAN wanted Nigeria to remain among countries of particular concern to the US.

 

 

“We are astounded by the sadistic logic employed by CAN on this issue. CAN has simply forgotten what happened to those countries that had been of ‘particular concern’ to the US. Iraq, Syria, Libya, Afghanistan were countries of ‘particular concern’ to the US. It is only CAN that does not know what happened to those countries. Perhaps they are now the El-Dorado and consequently the envy of the rest of the world. That is what CAN wants for Nigeria.

 

 

If you continue to demarket your country and a foreign power invades it on account of your false propaganda and crocodile tears, your country may end up like libya where the killing of its leader without providing an alternative placed the citizens between Schilla and Charibdis, or like Afghanistan where many citizens ended up dropping from the skies, or like Syria where so called activists found themselves between the devil and the deep blue sea or like Iraq where nobody wants its citizens as they are currently trapped between Poland and Belarus in freezing weather.

 

 

“CAN said it was at a loss on the data used by the US government to delist Nigeria. This is as ridiculous as it is absurd. What temerity! So CAN expects the White House to take orders from a Christian cleric who is living comfortably in Sokoto, just a few meters from the Sultan’s palace and has never been disturbed there?

 

 

Well, if CAN is at a loss regarding the data used to delist Nigeria, is it also unaware of the statistics used to enlist the country among ‘Countries of Particular Concern’? Perhaps a request to access the file marked ‘US Congress Address’ in the computer system of the Sokoto cleric may throw light on the matter.

 

 

“It simply exposes our neighbour’s propensity for myopic dispensation when it comes to international politics. How can CAN assume that it is just enough to dispatch its enfant terrible and undisputed numero uno advocatus diaboli with a bundle of economies of truth to the US Congress for the latter to dispatch a thousand tucano fighters to bring down Islamdom in Nigeria? It is very clear that the US has outsmarted CAN.

 

 

“It is the height of deceit on the part of CAN to claim that ‘the US government did not contact us’ when they were listing Nigeria among the countries of 'Particular Concern' on religious freedom. Who took fake news of the killing of Christians alone to the US Congress? Or is CAN disowning the Sokoto cleric?

 

 

“CAN is a clever juggler. CAN can juggle several bottles at a time without any of them falling and breaking to pieces. CAN is adept at knocking the heads of the people in North Central with those of the core North. CAN can make the South East hot for Northerners while Muslims in the South West are turned outcasts in their own land pari passu.  CAN has mastered the art of hitting and being the one that cries loud. CAN feels no qualms with deception. It is just part of proselytization. Whether fair or foul, any means is applicable.

 

 

“Worse still, any of CAN’s victims that dares to cry after being hit is labelled a terrorist, a fundamentalist and a member cum receiver of funds from ISIS, ISWAP and Boko Haram put together. Before anybody can say Jack Robinson, CAN calls on the security agencies to investigate the crier. Such has been the lot of MURIC in the hands of the agents of CAN in this country.

 

 

“It has been revealed that Boko Haram killed thirty seven thousand, five hundred (37,500) persons from 2015 to 2018. Of this figure, thirty two thousand (32,000) were Muslims while five thousand, five hundred (5,500) were Christians. This means that 85% of those killed were Muslims. Mosques have been bombed or burned. Imams, Shaykhs and emirs have been abducted and killed. But CAN still wants to deceive the world by claiming that it is Christians alone who are being killed in Nigeria.

 

 

“Our message to CAN is this, ‘Step up your diabolical propaganda, full of lies and deceit, as much as you can. Just remember the words of Abraham Lincoln, ‘You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.’

 

 

“You can fool Nigerians. They are gullible. The more they look, the less they see. This is a nation where abracadabra reigns. Nigerians take acrobatic religiousity for true piety. They take their hate preachers for their gospellers, their villains for their heroes, their thieves for their candidates and their heroes for their tyrants. But the US is a horse of another colour. Can CAN hear this? Your game is up. You can’t fool the United States.”

 

 

Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Director, 

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

 

Sunday, November 28, 2021

FUNAAB BAN ON NIQAB IS ILLEGAL – MURIC

 

28th November, 2021

PRESS RELEASE :

FUNAAB BAN ON NIQAB IS ILLEGAL – MURIC

                                   

The Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB) on Friday, 26th November, 2021 confirmed that the use of niqab has been banned in the institution. A female Muslim alumnus was forced to remove her veil by the school securitymen before she was allowed to enter the university.

 

 

However, an Islamic human rights organization, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), has rejected the ban. The group argued that no academic institution, public place authority or employer of labour has the right to ban niqab because the freedom to ‘manifest’ religious belief is enshrined in the Constitution of Nigeria.

 

 

MURIC’s position was enunciated on Sunday, 28th November, 2021 by its director, Professor Ishaq Akintola.

 

The group said :

 

“No institution of learning, from primary to tertiary, whether federal, state, or even private, has the right to prohibit the use of hijab or niqab. It is a contravention of the provisions of Section 38(i) & (ii) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended which says inter alia:

 

 

“ ‘Every person shall be entitled to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, including freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom (either alone or in community with others, and in public or in private) to manifest and propagate his religion or belief in worship, teaching, practice and observance’

 

 

“Furthermore, Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Right, (ICCPR) guarantees the right to freedom of religion unconditionally. In addition, Article 9 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights & Fundamental Freedoms contains a right to have ‘respect for the religious feelings of believers…’ But FUNAAB authorities have no respect for the religious feelings of Muslims. This must stop.

 

 

“The problem with some non-Muslim heads of educational institutions and public offices in the South West is that they wrongly assume that they can compel Muslims under them to abide by their own non-Muslim way of dressing. They therefore go all out to enact rules and regulations which disallow Muslims from dressing like Muslims. This presupposes that they hate the sight of Muslims.

 

 

“We affirm that any rules and regulations which contradict the letter and spirit of the constitution is illegal, unlawful, illegitimate and unconstitutional. This is the import of Chapter 1, Part 1, Section 1(1) & (3) of the Constitution which stipulates:

 

 

“ ‘This Constitution is supreme and its provisions shall have binding force on all authorities and persons throughout the Federal Republic of Nigeria.’ In particular, Section 1(3) says, ‘If any other law is inconsistent with the provisions of this Constitution, this Constituion shall prevail, and that other law shall to the extent of the inconsistency be void.’

 

 

“To that extent, therefore, all anti-niqab pronouncements, memos, circulars, posters, etc issued by FUNAAB are null, void and of no legal effect whatsoever. Same goes for all such declarations and actions in other academic institutions throughout Yorubaland.  

 

 

“We are not unaware of the security implications of the use of niqab and hijab, particularly in these days of general insecurity and we are going to be pragmatic in our approach to this danger. There is the assumption that the dresses may aid shoplifting in campus bookshops or libraries. Weapons may also be hidden under such clothing. But the same fears should also be entertained about some of our African dresses, e.g. agbada or babanriga. Or will any institution contemplate the banning of these African dresses on their campuses?

 

 

“Therefore, if the authorities are not just keen on profiling Muslims, all they need to do is to ensure that Muslim women wearing niqab or hijab are checked by female security personnel. Their identities can also be verified by female officials who will take them to one side and take a look at their faces and cross-check on their identity cards.

 

 

“The security threat is not enough to deprive this insignificant number of students of their Allah-given fundamental human rights. Even the United Nations described Article 18 of the ICCPR as a provision that ‘cannot be derogated from, even in time of public emergency’.

 

 

“Hijab does not pose this kind of threat anyway. But how many female Muslim students use the niqab on campuses? They are very few, perhaps, 2, 3 or maximum of 5 in a campus. Those using niqab are very few because unlike hijab, niqab is not mandatory. It is a matter of choice but, at the same time, it is a symptom of a deeper spiritual journey into the labyrinth of taqwah (piety).

 

 

“Therefore, any Muslim woman who chooses to use niqab has simply elected not to ‘dress to kill’ or to show her curves just to make men salivate and run after her. Even for this reason alone, she deserves love and respect, not hate and humiliation.

 

 

“This is why we find the bill board on decent dressing erected by FUNAAB most illogical, highly irritating and extremely ridiculous. The university placed the picture of a Muslim woman in niqab among those of female students in hot pants, body-hogs, male sagging trousers, crazy jeans, etc. We strongly condemn this act of provocation and we demand that the Muslim woman’s picture be removed from the billboard without delay.

 

 

“FUNAAB must also withdraw the ban placed on niqab within seven days or Muslim students in the institution will embark on peaceful demonstration as from Monday, 6th December, 2021. FUNAAB is advised not to test our will or that of the Muslim students.

 

 

“The fact that Muslims in general have been quiet and docile in the South West does not mean that they are cowards. Also, the fact that Muslim students in the region have never raised their voice against tyrannical school authorities in spite of several provocative actions taken against them does not mean that they do not know their rights. They are simply abiding by the teachings of Islam on obedience to constituted authority.

 

 

“But the case has become different today as many institutions in the South West are bent on perpetuating the persecution of Muslim students. FUNAAB has crossed the red line. This oppression must stop and Muslim students have to take their destiny in their hands or the humiliation will continue ad infinitum. From now on, any institution in the South West that messes up with Allah-given fundamental human rights of Muslim students will face the wrath of the students.

 

 

“What MURIC will not encourage is violence. School properties must not be damaged. Neither should any individual be molested. Muslim students involved in peaceful demonstrations must be civil. Roads outside the campus must not be blocked as this is capable of causing discomfort to innocent road users or even death of people who are sick or pregnant women being rushed to the hospital.

 

 

“Ogun State branch of MURIC has been directed to liaise with the leadership of the Muslim Students Society of Nigeria (MSSN) in FUNAAB for the purpose of monitoring developments and to ensure that no single Muslim student engages in violence. All area units of the MSSN are advised to be on standby.

 

 

“The regular molestation faced by the female Muslim girl-child in Yorubaland has exposed the insincerity of feminist groups in Nigeria. Where is Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG)? Where are the female civil rights groups? Why have they turned the blind eye at the persecution faced by female Muslim students? This selective activism has exposed them.

 

 

“But Muslim students must understand from now on that their destiny is in their hands. This religious apartheid will not stop until they liberate themselves. Even South Africa under the notorious apartheid regime was not so bad. This will mark the beginning of another milestone in the peaceful struggle of Muslim students in the South West to liberate themselves from religious discrimination, stigmatization, tyranny, persecution and oppression. After decades of untold suffering, Yoruba Muslim students are saying : Let the Muslims go!”

 

 

Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Director, 

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)