The Muslim Rights Concern, MURIC, on Friday described the claim by the Nigerian Christian Elders Forum, NCEF, of supposed moves by President Muhammadu Buhari to islamiz Nigeria as a “compendium of lies from the pit of Jahannam”.
NCEF, under the leadership of former Defence Minister, Lt. Gen. T.Y Danjuma (retd); ex-Military Governor of Rivers State, General Zamani Lekwot (retd); and Chief Solomon Asemota, SAN, had dragged Buhari to the United Kingdom, UK, Parliament, over alleged move to Islamise Nigeria.
Alleging that the Nigerian leader was pursuing a jihad or Islamisation agenda, they told the UK parliament that Buhari was not serious about tackling insecurity arising from Boko Haram insurgency and herdsmen-farmers crises in the country.
Reacting to the allegation, MURIC stressed that the Islamization claim was “frivolous, unfounded, imaginary, untenable and unacceptable.”
In a statement signed and forwarded by its Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola, the group insisted that Nigerian’s membership of Organization of Islamic Cooperation, OIC, summit was not to Islamize the country.
MURIC recalled that Nigeria became a member of OIC during the regime of former Military Head of State, Gen Yakubu Gowon.
The statement reads: “Northern Christian Elders Forum (NCEF) yesterday petitioned the European Parliament over President Buhari’s attendance of the summit of the Organisation of Islamic Conference and alleged Islamisation of Nigeria. NCEF also alleged that the president was not doing enough on the security challenges facing the country.
“NCEF’s allegations are a compendium of lies from the pit of Jahannam. They are frivolous, unfounded, imaginary, untenable and unacceptable. We have no modicum of doubt that their lies will come crashing down on them like a pack of cards when the EU Parliament investigates their allegations. NCEF cannot fool the EU Parliament.
“EU Parliament will find it interesting to know that Nigeria became a member of OIC back in 1969 when General Yakubu Gowon (rtd), a Christian, took Nigeria to the organization in observer status. Gowon is not a Muslim but he needed the organisation’s support for Nigeria during the civil war (1967 – 1971). Spain, Portugal and France were supporting Biafra and Gowon found it mandatory to rally the support of African countries through Nigeria’s membership of OIC.
“It will therefore become clear that joining OIC has nothing to do with Islamisation but another way of pursuing Nigeria’s national interest. Nigeria joined for political expediency and the regularization in 1986 was merely procedural.
“Just as Gowon used the instrumentality of Nigeria’s membership of OIC to secure victory for Nigeria in the civil war, President Buhari used his physical presence at the 2019 OIC summit to return home with two juicy take-aways, not for himself, not for Jubril of Sudan, not for the Fulanis, not even for Daura, but for his country, Nigeria. OIC pledged to support Nigeria’s war against terrorism and also to support Nigeria in completing the ongoing Second Niger Bridge project.
“It is therefore unfortunate that NCEF still has the audacity to accuse Buhari of not doing enough on security issues and for attending the OIC summit. How would Nigeria have secured the organisation’s support for its war against terrorism if Buhari had not attended the summit and tabled Nigeria’s challenges there?
“Again, is the Second Niger Bridge situated in Daura? Who benefits from its completion? Is it Buhari personally, the Fulanis as a race or Islam as a creed? NCEF petition to the EU Parliament as well as the criticisms of Ohaneze and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) are therefore a mark of ingratitude. But we are certain that the petition in particular is an exercise in futility. Those behind the petition should bury their heads in shame considering the economic and security gains realized from the summit.
“Nigeria’s security challenges did not start under Buhari. The Boko Haram phenomenon started in the Obasanjo days and grew worse under Jonathan. The insurgents effectively occupied 17 local governments as far back as 2014. It was Buhari’s frontal confrontation that reduced the hoodlums to a hit and run guerrilla unit today.
“Bombs were exploding on a daily basis in Jonathan’s days but it receded to a weekly and later, monthly affair under Buhari. It was because the global terrorist network knew that Boko Haram is dying that the Islamic State of West Africa has taken over. The Nigerian security agencies kill and arrest scores of kidnappers, armed robbers and other criminals on a daily basis. Yet detractors claim that Buhari is not doing enough and NCEF thinks taking him to the EU Parliament is the solution. Where did they take Jonathan to when the North East was almost completely overrun under him? What kind of citizens drag their own country in the mud before foreigners? Nigerians are waiting to see how NCEF will succeed in its satanic mission.
“Concerning the allegation of Islamisation via the OIC, if Gowon, a Christian, took Nigeria to OIC (and he did) without Islamising Nigeria, if Obasanjo, also a Christian, attended OIC (and he did) without being Islamised, if Jonathan, another Christian, also attended OIC (and he did) without being Islamised, then this allegation is a mere tool constantly and indecently employed by professional blackmailers. Interestingly, it is used selectively, particularly when a Muslim is in power.
“We will not succumb to such cheap blackmail and we have no scintilla of doubt that the EU Parliament which is full of credible and intelligent democrats as well as other lovers of truth around the world will see through this gimmick. Do they even think the EU Parliament is made up of mischievous people like them? Do they think the rest of the world have not found out the truth about what is going on in Nigeria? They have merely exposed themselves for what they really are. Petitioning the EU Parliament with a document loaded with fabrications is petty, demeaning and unpatriotic.
“We are however miffed by the eagerness of our Christian neighbours to lie at will just to blackmail Muslim leaders. This clearly amplifies a major characteristic of the NCEF and its cohorts, namely, failure to practice the teachings of the scripture.
“One of the injunctions in the Ten Commandments says ‘Thou shall not lie’ (Exodus 20:16). Leviticus 19:11 says, ‘Do not steal, do not lie, do not deceive one another’. Proverbs 13:5 refers to liars as shameless people, ‘The righteous hate what is false, but the wicked make themselves a stench and bring shame on themselves’. In his letter to the Colossians, Paul advised them against telling lies, ‘Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices’ (Colossians 3:9 – 11)
“We urge President Muhammadu Buhari to ignore NCEF’s tantrums and continue his good work. Posterity will record him as the father of modern Nigeria, a nation that came out of the ruins of squandermania, moral debauchery, suicide-instilling roads and epileptic electricity to become one of the global best in transparency, probity, integrity and infrastructure.
“On a last note, we appreciate majority of Nigerian Christians who do not peddle or believe these diabolical lies. We reiterate that we are one with all righteous Christians who follow the teachings of Jesus (peace be upon him) to the letter. We appeal to Nigerians in general to seize the opportunity of Buhari’s credible leadership to join hands together with their Muslim neighbours in buiding a prosperous nation. We remind NCEF that it diminishes its corporate entity to run down its own country using unfounded allegations for parochial reasons. NCEF is advised to eschew lies. The world is now a global village. Therefore, NCEF cannot fool the EU Parliament.”
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