Sunday, August 30, 2020

MURIC LAUDS LASG FOR BOOSTING ARABIC EDUCATION

 

31st August, 2020                             

PRESS RELEASE:

MURIC LAUDS LASG FOR BOOSTING ARABIC EDUCATION

 

An Islamic human rights organization, Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), has commended the state government for boosting the teaching of Arabic Language in the state. However, the group urged LASG to complement the effort with the recruitment of more Arabic teachers in order to make it pragmatic and effective. The commendation was given by the Director of the organization, Professor Ishaq Akintola, in a press statement circulated among journalists on Monday, 31st August, 2020.

 

 

MURIC’s statement came on the heels of a workshop organised by the Ministry of Education for Arabic Teachers across the six education districts of the State. Speaking at the opening ceremony of the workshop, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Abosede Adelaja said the Lagos State Government (LASG) has rekindled the interest of public school students towards learning Arabic language with the introduction of teachers to new skills and methodology that will simplify the process and make it more interesting.

 

 

The workshop was held at the Multilingual International Resource Centre, Maryland, Lagos, on Thursday, 27th August, 2020, under the theme ‘Teaching and Learning of Arabic Language in Lagos State Schools: Status, Challenges and the Way Forward’.

 

 

MURIC posited, “The workshop organized last Thursday 27th August, 2020, for teachers of Arabic by the Lagos State Ministry of Education is quite laudable. It will go a long way in boosting the teaching of Arabic Language in Lagos public schools. The theme was quite apt and it depicts LASG’s readiness to improve the teaching and learning of languages in the state.

 

 

“However, we appeal to the Ministry to complement this move by recruiting more teachers for the subject in order to make the workshop pragmatic, effective and rewarding. There is a huge shortfall in the number of Arabic teachers vis a vis the number of public schools in the state. This has resulted in the nonavalability of Arabic teachers in many schools.

 

 

“We urge the state government to investigate the claim being made by teachers of the subject that presently 98.5% of public schools in Lagos do not have teachers of Arabic Language and that the few who were originally employed in primary and secondary schools are teaching Islamic studies. This trend may defeat the very purpose of the workshop and the state government’s good intention particularly if LASG wishes to remove the language barrier in the path of the state government as it strives towards making the state a 21st century economy.”

 

 

Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Director,

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

 

 

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

MURIC CELEBRATES SULTAN AT 64

 

26th August, 2020                             

PRESS RELEASE:

MURIC CELEBRATES SULTAN AT 64

 

The Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, Alhaji Muhammad Sa‘ad Abubakar, became 64 on Monday 24th August 2020. Hundreds of well-wishers have paid homage to the topmost Nigerian traditional ruler as he marks the occasion.        

 

 

In its goodwill message, the Nigerian Islamic human rights association described Sultan Abubakar as cerebral, uncommon and totally detribalised. MURIC’s goodwill message was contained in a press release signed by the director of the organisation, Professor Ishaq Akintola on Wednesday, 26th August 2020.

 

 

The statement reads:

 

“We join millions of Nigerians to celebrate a unique leader, the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Alhaji Muhammadu Sa‘ad Abubakar, as he turns 64.

 

 

“Sultan Abubakar is a cerebral, dynamic, uncommon and totally detribalised leader. He accommodates all regardless of ethnicity or creed. He thinks more of the whole country than of Sokoto Sultanate. Instead of leading a sedentary existence or exhibiting armchair leadership, the Sultan has been highly mobile. From Enugu to Nguru, from Oshogbo to Kaura-Namoda, the Sultan has left his foot print on the Nigerian architectural discuss. Consequently, he has enjoyed nation-wide love and confidence among all which no Sultan before him ever enjoyed.  

 

 

“More fascinating is the manner he has closed the gap between the adherents of Christianity and Islam. His level of religious tolerance is nulli secundus. His cool-headedness in the face of provocation is legend. Sultan Abubakar’s sense of humour is numero uno. He can collect candy from a hungry lion. Yet behind the calm fa├žade is a tactician and a fearless strategist primus inter pareil.

 

 

“Nigerian Muslims have gained a lot from his leadership and the religion of Islam has made tremendous progress under him. Perhaps his greatest gift is his ability to mobilise stakeholders at different levels and locations for various developmental purposes. Sultan Abubakar is an achiever, a quintessential leader, an embodiment of visionary mentorship and a personification of nationalistic propensity.  

 

 

“We therefore charge Nigerian Muslims to remain loyal to the central leadership and to shun all irredentist elements and ethnic jingoists with their misleading ideology of North-South dichotomy and a non-existent inferiority cum superiority complex. Those who tell you that Northern Muslims despise you only wish to divide us. Their intention is to weaken Islamdom. Stop listening to them.

 

 

“It is not the business of non-Muslims to tell us that some Muslims hate us. It is a trick used by those who deny Southern Muslims their Allah-given fundamental human rights. They wish to divert your attention from their monopoly of the dividends of democracy. We remind Muslims in the Southern part of Nigeria that Islam is ethnicity-blind. Muslims are one nation as Islam recognises no geographical boundaries.

 

 

“There is no difference between a Northern and a Southern Muslim. The Glorious Qur’an says, ‘Verily indeed this brotherhood of yours is a single brotherhood and I am your Lord. Therefore, worship Me’ (Qur’an 21:92). Southern Muslims should also note that the hadith forbids al-Jannah for any Muslim who dies while promoting ethnicity above the religion of Islam.

 

 

“We must make our number count by remaining united and by speaking with one voice. Nigerian Muslims have never had it so good because we now have a leader who is very active and he is accepted by all. We should therefore rally behind him and ignore those who appeal to tribal sentiment.

 

 

“We beseech Almighty Allah to continue to protect and bless Sultan Muhammad Sa‘ad Abubakar as well as members of his family. We pray for long life on the throne for him in an atmosphere of peace, tranquility and progress. Age with grace, the Sultan of the people.”

 

 

Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Director,

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

 

Monday, August 24, 2020

COVID-19: PRAY FOR LAGOS HEALTH COMMISSIONER - MURIC

 

25th August, 2020                             

PRESS RELEASE:

COVID-19: PRAY FOR LAGOS HEALTH COMMISSIONER - MURIC

 

Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi, has reportedly tested positive to COVID-19. This was announced yesterday Monday, 24th August, 2020 by the state’s Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotosho.

 

 

In its reaction to this development, an Islamic human rights group, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has called on all Lagosians to pray for the commissioner’s quick recovery. MURIC spoke on Tuesday, 25th August, 2020 through its Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola.

 

 

MURIC said, “We are deeply saddened by news of the infection of the energetic Commissioner for Health in Lagos State. We learnt that he has already gone into isolation with members of his family. We assure him that he is not alone. We are with him in this trying period. Our hearts go to his amiable family.

 

 

“We call on the good people of Lagos State in particular and Nigerians in general to pray fervently for his early recuperation. Professor Abayomi has given his all to Lagosians, nay Nigerians as a whole in these troubled times. He has been our first line of defence all through the tough period of COVID-19. He was always in the thick of the action. He put his life on the line several times and this ugly development is evidence of his selfless commitment.  

 

 

“We feel greatly obligated to solidarise with him. He is Nigeria’s hero of the fight against COVID-19. We therefore call for special prayers for him and his family in all mosques in Lagos State on Friday 28th August, 2020 and in all Lagos churches on Sunday, 30th August, 2020. Muslim Asalatu groups and Christian vigil centers are urged to remember him in their gatherings. A man who has stood solidly as our health vanguard deserves this much and even more.

 

 

“MURIC reminds Nigerians to strictly follow all COVID-19 protocols in social distancing, frequent hand-washing, masking and avoidance of large gatherings. We warn cynics to hear and obey while still alive and healthy so that they will not regret when it is too late.

 

 

“May Allah restore Professor Akin Abayomi’s health back to its robust status. May He in His Infinite Mercy cleanse our land and indeed the whole world of all pandemics now and in future.”

 

 

Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Director,

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

 

Saturday, August 22, 2020

EL-RUFAI: WE REJECT NBA’S DIVIDE ET IMPERA - MURIC

 

23rd August, 2020                             

PRESS RELEASE:

EL-RUFAI: WE REJECT NBA’S DIVIDE ET IMPERA - MURIC

 

An Islamic human rights group, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) said it has uncovered a subterranean attempt by the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) to replace Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State with the Governor of Borno State, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum. Recall that a tornado of criticism greeted NBA’s dropping of El-Rufai from the list of speakers at its 2020 Virtual Annual General Conference (AGC) which is billed to take place from 26th to 29th August, 2020.     

 

 

Meanwhile MURIC, which previously called on Northern lawyers to boycott the conference has cautioned NBA against any attempt to divide Nigerian Muslims. The group also asked the conference organisers to disinvite Governor Wike of Rivers State in view of the latter’s acts of executive impunity. These were contained in a press statement issued by the Director of the organisation, Professor Ishaq Akintola, on Sunday, 23rd August, 2020.

 

 

“The alleged attempt to replace Governor El-Rufai with the Governor of Borno State, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum has already failed. It is sheer divide et impera. It is dead on arrival. It has suffered the same fate as attempts to separate Muslims of the South from their brothers in the North. It will never work.

 

 

“The hadith describes Muslims as a single building wherein all parts of the structure support one another or as the anatomy of a man in whom all other parts feel the pain whenever a single part suffers dislocation. Our message to NBA is this: You cannot honour a Muslim to add salt to the injury of another Muslim.

 

 

“NBA wants to rob Peter to pay Paul. It has backfired. Already, some states in Northern Nigeria have already threatened to pull out of the fast-approaching virtual conference of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) over the dropping of Governor Nasir El-Rufai from the list of speakers. These include Bauchi, Jigawa, Kaduna and still counting.

 

 

“Our advice to the NBA leadership is to do the needful. Apologise to El-Rufai and re-invite him. He has been unjustly treated. NBA still has 72 hours to go. It is not too late to eat the humble pie. NBA acted in bad faith. The planning committee should have done its home work properly. It is a failure of logistics.

 

 

Besides, it is extremely immoral to ask El-Rufai to stay away after inviting him in the first place. Afterall, he did not lobby for the lecture. Put yourselves in his place and stop grandstanding. Or was the invitation a trap all along? Was it an attempt to score Southern Kaduna another undeserved political point? If so, it is a gross miscalculation. NBA must go back to the drawing board.

 

 

MURIC also decried the inclusion of Governor Nyesom Wike in the list of speakers at the conference.

 

“NBA has no business inviting Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State to speak at its conference. Wike’s excesses are legend. When it comes to democratic norms, Wike is a square peg, NBA is a round hole. Wike and NBA should not be seen together.

 

 

“Wike is a serial violator of the constitution. How can the NBA have anything to do with a governor who declared his state a Christian state contrary to Section 10 of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution which forbids such? On the strength of that illegal, unlawful, illegitimate and unconstitutional declaration, the Trans Amadi Mosque was demolished in August 2019.

 

 

“The demolition of Prudent Hotel, Alode in Eleme and Etemeteh Hotel in Onne on 10th May, 2020 by Wike’s bulldozers should have served as caution for NBA. The conference organisers should not have touched Wike with a long pole. Wike is unpredictable. He has no respect for either rule of law or protocol.

 

 

“We remind NBA of the April 8, 2020 Caverton helicopter saga in which Wike jailed two pilots and their ten passengers for six weeks in spite of appeals from several quarters. We are disappointed that NBA is romancing with a power-drunk leader. It is better for NBA leadership to ride on the back of a tiger than to allow an unpredictable governor to speak at its conference.

 

 

“Again, how innocent is Wike in the ‘Rivers of blood’ hullabaloo? Is NBA endorsing all these executive recklessness? Is NBA also waging war on Islam? Why wasn’t Wike’s act of impunity considered before he was invited? Nigerian Muslims strongly oppose the invitation extended to Governor Wike. He is coming to vomit deadlier venom on Islamdom. NBA leadership has a moral burden and the vicarious responsibility for any untoward utterance of Wike at the conference.

 

 

“By asking Wike to speak at this august gathering in August, NBA has endorsed fascism and totalitarian dictatorship in the Nigerian political architecture. If the law body cannot dissociate itself from Wike’s political fiefdom by stopping him from speaking at its conference, disinviting El-Rufai is the Mother of All Injustice.

 

 

Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Director,

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

 

Thursday, August 20, 2020

REMOVAL OF EL-RUFAI: NBA MISFIRED - MURIC

 

21st August, 2020                             

PRESS RELEASE:

REMOVAL OF EL-RUFAI: NBA MISFIRED - MURIC

 

The Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) yesterday removed the name of El-Rufai from the list of speakers at its 2020 Virtual Annual General Conference (AGC) which is scheduled for 26th to 29th August, 2020.      

 

 

Reacting to this development, an Islamic human rights organisation, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), described NBA’s action as parochial, myopic and jejune. MURIC spoke on Friday, 21st August, 2020 through its Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola.

 

 

“NBA yesterday dropped Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, the governor of Kaduna State from the list speakers at its Virtual AGC which is billed to start on 26th August, 2020. It is high level prejudice. NBA as a group of learned literati should know better. It is parochial, myopic and jejune.

 

 

“The fact that NBA took the ill-advised step on account of a petition written by a group, Open Bar Initiative whose main fear is expressed as ‘One can be sure that he will also use the given platform to advance his conflated narrative, designed to deceive and confuse the nation on the real causes of the killings’ exposes NBA’s impatience, intolerance and self-conceit.

 

 

“Is it not better to hear him out than to lock him out? Is it not better to jaw-jaw than to war-war? The departure of the ambassador, they say, is the beginning of war. By dropping El-Rufai, NBA has declared war on the other side in the Southern Kaduna crisis. By so doing, it lost a golden chance to be part of the solution to the conflict. NBA has elected to be part of the problem.

 

 

 “Was it not Jane Goodall who said, ‘Change happens by listening and then starting a dialogue with the people who are doing something you don’t believe is right’? Change cannot come through rejection and exclusion.

 

 

“How justifiable is NBA’s decision to exclude Governor El-Rufai from the virtual conference when people like Chief Olusegun Obasanjo of Odi and Zaki Biam fame and Governor Nyesom Wike are among the speakers? Who bulldozed the hotels of innocent people despite court orders? Who visited unspeakable violence on political opponents? Should NBA hobnob with people linked to genocide and undemocratic practices? So why demonise El-Rufai where killers of innocent people and enemies of democracy are idolised?

 

 

“MURIC calls on all lawyers from the North to boycott NBA’s AGC in protest against this open declaration of war on Northern Kaduna. Every little action of injustice must spark a reaction if tyranny is to be stopped in the world. NBA has crossed the red line in human relations and conflict management. No single lawyer from the North should participate in the AGC either as a resource person or as a participant unless NBA rescinds its decision to drop El-Rufai from the list of speakers. Injury to one is injury to all.”

 

 

Professor Ishaq Akintola,

Director,

Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)