Restive Muslims in Ilorin
SIR: May God grant eternal rest to Mama Hannah Idowu Dideolu Awolowo. She should tell Pa Jeremiah Obafemi Awolowo that Yorubaland is now ruled by a new political class that demolished people’s houses and shops. The governors didn’t provide pipe-borne water; they neglect bad roads; they owe workers many months of unpaid salaries and allowances.
There is a Yoruba interview programme before noon every Sunday on Radio Kwara, Ilorin, which some Muslim leaders use to tell their fellow Muslims what they want them to do or not do. During the last governorship election campaigns, the interviewee responded to a phone-in question, saying the Qur’an forbids voting for a kafir (an unbeliever); implying that the Christians contesting against the incumbent Muslim, Dr. Abdul Fatah Ahmed, were kafirs.
On Sunday, September 20, 2015, the interviewee hammered on carnival as representing the evil of “naked-dancing.” Then someone phoned-in saying he represented the group that would go round during the Id-el-Kabir to arrest any Muslim involved in any carnival, and hand them over to the police. The programme is self-moderated.
I have no stake in any carnival. But, is carnival a crime in Nigeria’s laws? Is Nigeria better than the Western world where carnival is celebrated, in terms of respect for human rights and peaceful co-existence. Nigerian rulers who are Christians and Muslims always want to use force to make everybody dance to their own tunes, even illegally, using the principle of “might is right.” Blame them for the Boko Haram terrorism and wasting of human and material resources.
Christian and Muslim exploiters in Nigeria hammer on “indecent dressing” and “homosexual marriage” to divert attention from how they milk Nigerians in churches and mosques. Their allies are the politicians who embezzle and misappropriate public funds, and sacrifice some of their loot to churches and mosques. Blame them collectively for mass abject poverty in a land flowing with milk and honey.
•Pius Abioje, University of Ilorin.