The Companion – an association of Muslim men in business and in professions, has totally condemned the recent gruesome killing of a student of Sheu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, Miss Deborah Samuel over the blasphemy of Prophet Muhammad(Solallahu alaehi wa salam).
A statement by the National Amir of the Islamic group, Engr. Kamil Olalekan, indicates that Islam is a divine faith which has no place for extrajudicial killing under whatever guise.
He described Islam as a religion of peace and that Prophet Muhammad as an epitome of peace, tolerance, perseverance, truthfulness and honesty who suffered much humiliations and attacks in the hands of the unbelievers, but bore them all with uncommon patience and perseverance and without a single retaliation in the history of Islam.
The Companion notes with grave concern, the incessant and calculated attacks by overzealous Non-Muslims on Islam, its Prophet and Muslims globally, but calls for tolerance and perseverance in line with the injunctions of Allaah and tacit approval of Prophet Muhammad.
The Muslim organisation recalls a premeditated worst scenario, experienced by the Muslim Community in August 2010 at the University of Ibadan Central Mosque, when one Miss Seun Adegunsoye, a Law student then, stunned the congregation with disparaging statements about Allaah and Muslims while the Jumaat prayer was in full swing, but which the adherents bored with equanimity. Records have it, that the intervention of the University Muslim Ummah made the University Authorities commutte the expulsion of the blasphemous character.
The Companion therefore advocates diligent prosecution of those responsible for the killing of Deborah Samuel in Sokoto, to serve as deterrence to others as powers to take life resides solely in Allah, stressing that, “in an organised society such as ours, the same power is only vested in constituted authority after following due judicial process, to establish prima facie case against suspect.”
The association charges the government, to revisit all cases of extra-judicial killing, including the one witnessed few months ago in Ijagbo, Kwara State during a peaceful protest against unilateral decision of the christians,to ban the use of hijab at Oyun Baptist High School among many others.
The group equally condemns,the more recent terror attack, leading to the dastardly and gruesome murder of a pregnant woman and her four children in Anambra State,the act described as not only barbaric, but unacceptable and therefore calls on the state and federal government to ensure the perpetrators are brought to book. It clamours that a stop be put to such a senseless, intentional, heinous act, to avoid breakdown of law, peace and order in the country at large through reprisal attack on innocent, peace loving and law abiding citizens.
“This can be likened to a deliberate act bordering on annihilation and extermination of Muslims from the surface of the earth. May Allah forbid,” it prays.
The Companion also describes as worrisome, the selective activism of a section of Nigerians such as people of other faiths, NGOs, Social critics, and the print and electronic media’s refusal to give these killings the deserved attention as it was the case when a christian was the victim.
The group recalls that the killing of Miss Deborah Samuel has continually attracted wide condemnation of renowned Islamic Clerics and Muslims in general, saying, “Can we therefore term this as an act of hypocrisy taken too far”?
The Muslim organisation hereby advocates the enactment of extant laws, punishing acts of blasphemy to prevent future occurrence and distruption of peace, law and order, citing the steps already taken in Europe where 7 panel of judges of the European Court of Human Rights passed the verdict that “Defaming or Demeaning the prophet of Islam goes beyond permissible limits of an objective debates and could cause prejudice in the society and will risk religious peace”. Consequent upon this is that, whoever is caught for blasphemy in Europe may end up in jail. What a great step towards maintenance of law and order.
The group wonders that if such a measure could be put in place in a supposedly largest christian community, then such an extant law should be a welcomed development in Nigeria.
It however calls for great caution on the part of Muslims, to refuse giving-in, in the face of insults, humiliation and blasphemy of the Prophet of Islam, so that the criminal elements would not take advantage of the situation to paint Islam in bad light.
The Muslim group consequently charges the christian clerics to dwell the more on sermons which border on the virtues of tolerance, perseverance, accommodation, mutual respect and understanding, love and great respect for the sanctity of life,to guard against ethno-religious crises in the country.