Monday, February 19, 2018

WE MOURN SHAYKH TURETA



20th February, 2018

PRESS RELEASE:
WE MOURN SHAYKH TURETA 

The death of Kaduna-based Shaykh Abubakar Tureta has been announced. He died yesterday at Garkuwa Hospital, Kaduna, at the age of 74. He had been battling with injuries he sustained in an accident three years ago.

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) is deeply saddened by Shaykh Tureta’s death. We commiserate with the Governor and people of Kaduna State over this irreplaceable loss.

Shaykh Abubakar Tureta was an ocean of knowledge, a teacher of teachers, a powerful orator and a model nulli secundus. He was a friend, an admirer and a mentor of MURIC. We will definitely miss his warmth, his kindness and his disarming smile.

Our hearts are heavy with grief today but we take solace in the Islamic fatalistic philosophy of death. We condole with the family on the occasion of this huge loss. We urge his children, particularly the eldest son, Justice Salisu Abubakar Tureta, to continue from where the Shaykh stopped.  

Finally, we pray that Almighty Allah forgives our dear Shaykh. May divine mercy be showered on him from the day he entered the grave till the Day of Resurrection.

Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Director,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

Sunday, February 18, 2018

VITAL CORRUPTION LESSON FROM SOUTH AFRICA



19th February, 2018

PRESS RELEASE:
VITAL CORRUPTION LESSON FROM SOUTH AFRICA
Former South African president, Jacob Zuma, was forced out of office last week for corruption charges. The South African Supreme Court had in October 2017 upheld about 800 corruption charges against Zuma before his party, the African National Congress (ANC) ordered him to quit. Although Zuma defied the order ab initio, he resigned on the eve of a parliamentary vote of no confidence.

Zuma’s exit from power is very didactic. It reveals South Africa’s mature democratic practice where a president is booted out for being corrupt whereas in Nigeria, our own president is being pressurized to leave office for fighting corruption.   

Here lies the monumental paradox. The outside world must be laughing at Nigeria as they watch the unfolding drama. Two former heads of state have openly asked President Muhammadu Buhari not to seek a second term. The National Assembly (NASS) is also fighting tooth and nail to get rid of the president as many of its members are enmeshed in corruption cases.


But Buhari’s major selling point has been his incorruptibility. He has no house in London. None in Paris or any foreign country for that matter. Neither has any stolen fund been traced to him before and during his tenure. He has succeeded in blocking leakages through which our common patrimony has been siphoned into the private pockets of greedy politicians. Foreign countries endorse him as a leader of unassailable integrity and the naira is getting back its lost glory as a result of all these. Prices of goods are falling.


Diversification of the economy is turning other sectors into veritable sources of income. The railways are roaring back. Agriculture is once again taking its prime of place, electricity supply is witnessing unprecedented improvement while macadam roads are fast replacing the death traps which claimed hundreds of lives on a regular basis. Buhari’s social welfare scheme is already taking care of thousands of Nigerian youths.


The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) urges Nigerians to open their eyes very wide. Those who stole Nigeria’s money have become very powerful and they are using their stolen money to spread false propaganda to de-market Buhari. All the allegations of nepotism, religious bias and incompetence are tales from moonlight concocted by corrupt elements who want to bring back corruption.


For blocking their access to easy money, they wished Buhari dead. Based on their knowledge of the potency of the alleged gas poison conspiracy theory, they said Buhari was on life-support machine. They claimed he was dead and secretly buried. They made the claims with so much vehemence and total confidence that, with hindsight, we are constrained to believe that only those involved in the alleged attempt could have made such strong claims.


But when all that failed they are now trying to incite the populace against him. They claimed that herdsmen were killing travelers on Lagos-Ibadan expressway. They also claimed that the same herdsmen were slaughtering people like rams on Shagamu-Ore expressway. Now they are claiming that herdsmen have attacked workers in Ondo council office. But police debunked all these false alarms within hours.


We reaffirm our conviction that it was corruption that brought poverty and disease to the Nigerian nation. Corruption was responsible for the bad roads. Corruption robbed us of a reliable public health and transport system. Corruption brought death in the air via frequent plane crashes. Corruption wrecked the Nigerian Airways and the Nigerian Railway Corporation. Corruption is responsible for insecurity. Corruption caused mass unemployment. Corruption turned the education sector into a comatose environment. This enemy numero uno is now being tackled by the Buhari administration. Who wants all these evils to come back?


To cap the edifice, we testify that we have seen signs that corruption is receiving deadly blows from the Buhari administration and it may eventually die for our great country to survive if we give Buhari the chance to consolidate on the present gains. If it is true that South Africa expelled its corrupt president for the sake of South Africa, Nigeria must retain its incorruptible leader for the sake of Nigeria.


Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Director,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

NIGERIAN LAW SCHOOLS PROVOKING MUSLIMS




14th February, 2018

PRESS RELEASE:
NIGERIAN LAW SCHOOLS PROVOKING MUSLIMS
Although the dust is yet to settle on the call to bar hijab saga featuring Amasa Firdaus, the six Nigerian Law School campuses across the nation may not allow female Muslim students due for Bar Part II to wear their hijabs during the 2017/2018 First Term Law Dinner, which started yesterday, Wednesday, 13th February, 2018. The dinners will run till tomorrow, Thursday, 15th February, 2018. 

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) warns that any attempt to bar female Muslim law students who wish to use hijab from doing so is an infringement on Allah-given fundamental rights of those students as entrenched in Section 38 (i) & (ii) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Already, MURIC has received reports of a number of female Muslim law students at the Agbani, Enugu, Lagos and Abuja campuses who are allegedly being threatened with disciplinary measures should they use the Hijab at the Law Dinner.

We remind authorities of these Law School campuses of the provisions of Section 42 of the Nigerian Constitution which prohibits the placing of any citizen under any internally formulated restriction. We also call attention to Section 13 of the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act (1991) which forbids officials from taking any action “prejudicial to the rights of any person knowing that such act is unlawful or contrary to any government policy”


We affirm clearly, emphatically and unequivocally that whatever emanates from any circular in any Nigerian institution (the Law Schools included) must comply with the dictates of the Nigerian Constitution which is the font et origo of all laws, rules, regulations, provisions and directives in this country.


MURIC warns that certain campuses of the Nigerian Law Schools are deliberately precipitating crisis by stereotyping female Muslim students on the issue of hijab. Those who seek to play God in the lives of Nigerian Muslims are religious fanatics bent on intimidating, oppressing and persecuting Muslims.


This is a dangerous situation capable of snowballing into a religious crisis whose consequences no one can predict. The Qur’an affirms that oppression is worse than killing (Qur’an 2:191). This verse underlines the gravity of the hijab phenomenon. Female Muslims are being persecuted in order to give undue advantage to non-Muslims. It is religious apartheid. It is unacceptable. We will rather be free men in our graves than live like puppets and second class citizens.

Those who make rules and regulations impossible to obey make it impossible not to disobey. Law Schools where anti-Muslim dressing codes are issued in a multi-religious Nigeria do not belong to decent and accommodating communities of men and women.


While MURIC advocates non-violence in its interventions (based on its avowed motto, ‘Dialogue, Not Violence’), Nigerian Law Schools should not wait until radical and anti-dialogue elements hijack the initiative and start disrupting Law School Dinners. They may even do more. The fact that these anti-Muslim antics are not attempted anywhere in the core North suggests tactical conspiracy against Nigerian Muslims by authorities of those Law Schools where the profiling and persecution of Muslims have become the stock-in-trade.


Finally, we call on the Federal Government and the National Assembly (particularly the House of Representatives where the Amasa Firdaus case is still being investigated) to turn its attention to what is going on in the Law School Dinners across the country. Muslims are not being violent now but they are being persecuted. Those who fail to listen to the dialogue group may have cause to regret it sooner or later.    


Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Director,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

Sunday, February 11, 2018

MURIC CHARGES BUHARI TO FORGE AHEAD



12th February, 2018

PRESS RELEASE:
MURIC CHARGES BUHARI TO FORGE AHEAD
The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has been accused of incompetence, ineffectiveness, lack of performance, etc by its critics.    

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has taken a cursory look at the allegations and concluded that they are subjective, emotive and lack merit. The allegations do not truly reflect the realities on ground. 

They paint a gloomy picture of the country in general but our findings prove that such a picture remains in the figment of the authors’ imagination. An administration which has a poor understanding of the economy cannot raise external reserve to $42 billion from a paltry $29 billion within two and a half years particularly with falling oil prices. Neither can a regime which brandishes a kindergarten economic expertise rescue a country from deep recession within such a short period.  

How did the Nigerian stock exchange get ranked as best performing in 2017 if Buhari has really dipped our economy in deep waters? Just last week, Interpol adjudged Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) as the best on the African continent and it advised sister nations to emulate the anti-corruption agency.

The indices are definitely not in favour of Buhari’s critics. By blocking leakages and diversifying sources of income, Nigeria’s non-oil revenues are poised to surpass income from oil for the first time in 45 years. Rice production has witnessed an unprecedented increase that the price has not only been drastically brought down, it has also re-jigged the monumental Kano groundnut pyramids albeit in form of rice this time around. Local farmers are feeling the positive impact of government’s intervention.  

In the area of national moral rearmament, corrupt judges are being held accountable for the first time in the nation’s history. A judge was sacked two days ago while another was compulsorily retired. An ex-governor was jailed earlier.
  
MURIC affirms that Buhari may not be a saint because no human being is perfect but he is definitely getting Nigeria out of the woods. Things are getting better. It could have been faster and more noticeable had the National Assembly (NASS) been cooperative.


Nigerians must remember that the cassu belli for the parliamentary coup which allowed elements sympathetic to the opposition to take over both Senate and the House of Representatives in the early days of this regime was to slow down Buhari’s work and turn around to accuse him of incompetence and lack of performance.


But they are now surprised that various projects are going on around the country. This is giving Buhari’s critics the jitters. It explains why they are feverishly spreading one false rumour after another, all in an attempt to cause chaos so that those projects would not become fait accompli.

We urge Nigerians to ignore those wicked rumours. They are designed to distract attention from the good works of the government. Nigerians should not make the same mistake they made in 1985 when Buhari’s transparent military regime was truncated. That interruption brought us to where we are today. The same brains behind the 1985 interruption are back at their old game. But they will fail woefully this time around because Nigerians already know them as the real enemies of the people.

To round up, MURIC charges the entire citizenry to remain faithful and loyal to the Nigeria project. We remind all and sundry that Buhari has remained consistent and uncompromising in spite of his long period of illness. We appeal to critics to stop all distractions and allow Buhari to work. Nigeria will reach higher heights if we can give Buhari another mandate in 2019 without a hostile NASS. With 2019 on our mind, we invite President Muhammadu Buhari to ignore his detractors and to forge ahead.  


Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Director,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)