How can we call Nigeria a nation when a Muslim mob can just burn down a house and eight of its occupants (innocent students) because someone lives in that house who rescued a badly beaten man that was accused of blasphemy and battered to stupor? Have we become another Pakistan, no offense to Pakistan? Where is our humanity? Where are our laws? Where are our law enforcement agencies? What are we doing about folks who preach hate and violence against religious Others and urge mob lynching as a response to suspected blasphemy? If Nigeria does not kill religious extremism and ignorance, religious extremism and ignorance will kill Nigeria.
-Professor Moses Ochonu, Professor of African History at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee, USA.
Condemning reactionaries found guilty of killing a “blasphemer” isn’t enough, they should be publicly executed to serve as deterrent to their cousins. It should be in an open field, open to all, and televised!
What happened in Zamafara had happened before, and will happen again unless we rise above this sea of religious extremism in which we are drowning.
We have failed these zealots, we have failed to build a liberating education system to show them the foolishness of killing fellow human beings over what they take to be an affront to Islam.
If Zamfara’s Governors had devoted to education and social orientation, the same energy and resources invested in the gimmick they call Shariah, a better society would’ve already been evolving.
We have failed ourselves!
-Gimba Kakanda, Journalist
Few days ago the social media was awash with news of a student who was beaten to stupor by his mates in Talata Mafara in Zamfara State over allegation that he blasphemed against Islam. Some gentleman named Tajudeen who knew the young man took him to hospital, when the fanatics heard that was not fully dead, they rushed to the hospital to finish him up but somehow some other fellow had gone ahead to take the young man away to safety. The mob descended on the house Tajudeen lived, burnt his car and set the whole house ablaze, ensuring that all the occupant of the house were roasted in the inferno.
Apart from a few of my northern Muslim friends, popular commenters on social media, I noticed that majority chose to ignore the story as if it never happened. I really don’t want to talk about this issue as it is now an accepted culture in the north. In fact, that we are talking about it is because of the advent of social media. Before social media such happen and the next day it is over, the killers go scot-free.
Even in the case of Zamfara, I doubt if the police will conduct any serious investigation. I doubt if the government take this serious than just lip service to douse tension. I really doubt.
However, what prompt me into coming back to the issue again is that I noticed the eerie silence of popular Muslim bloggers exception of a few who have been almost always consistent in saying things as they are.
Like I have always said, until the north purge itself of Boko Haram mentality and invest in education, quality education, extremism would continue to be a problem there and Boko Haram like Matetsine would never end. They can only go underground, for a decade or two and resurrect again and again.
-George Onmonya Daniel
Abiodun Popoola Jimi Disu, wrote “Veteran Nigerian broadcaster asserts that ”the biggest damage that has been done to Nigeria is religion, what religion has done is to take away our reasoning faculties and place our minds in faiths and miracles. Our religious leaders are the greatest culprits”. It’s so apparent that majority of these mob actions are encouraged by Muslim clerics.”
Umaru Emma wrote, “It’s unfortunate. Mob verdict is taking us back to the dark age. That was how an old woman was murdered in kano when altercation ignited between her and one of the Islamic zealots. There and then, Issues led to another in the hands of the market leaders and the helpless woman was whisked away by an irate mob who responded to the blasphemy alarm. But, honestly if the government often take measures by subjecting the perpetrators to the full wrath of law as it always put to the public through their mouth pieces and media aides whenever such dastard acts are been perpetrated, this jungle justice over blasphemy would’ve been minimized.”
Anold Ali Ovurevu writes “First, the inhuman culture of Almajiri must be destroyed beyond ashes where lives are raised in open street refuse.
These nuts are in numbers and more are being bred as we read.
Cajetan Duruaku wrote, “…we have failed to build a liberating education system to show them the foolishness of killing fellow human being…”
Isaac Jakes writes, Jock As Oliver Queen would say to the big shots in Sterling City,”You have failed the city”, in the movie ‘Arrow’, we here in the Nigerian state have failed the city! I don’t think the original purpose of God to us was religion, but a relationship with HIM and each other. To me, religion has done more harm than good.