On Friday, March 15, 2019, all the civilised citizens of the world were horrified by the dastardly attack of a Christian terrorist and Australian citizen, Brenton Tarrant, on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, as Muslims converged for the worship of their Lord. In a gripping and carefully orchestrated plot that was intended to shock and awe the world, the terrorist live-streamed the video of his horrific massacre.
In the terrible attack that was unprecedented in the annals of the country, at least 50 Muslim worshippers across various nationalities were gunned down while more than 40 others sustained various degrees of injury. While many right-thinking people and governments across the world have expressed outrage at such a heinous crime and mass murder of various nationalities, there are those whose hearts are blotted by hatred and bigotry to the extent that every crime against Muslims is welcome. A typical example is the Australian Senator Fraser Anning who still blamed Muslims for being attacked!
The Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) under the leadership of its President-General, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, CFR, mni, strongly condemns this brazen act of terrorism on the defenseless Muslim worshippers in Christchurch. The Council also totally condemns the enabling environment created by racists, supremacists and left-wing extremists that allows Islamophobia to fester all over the world.
Corrosive anti-Muslim rhetoric and bigoted media reportage have led to a spike in hate-motivated and terror-induced attacks on Muslims across the world in recent years. From the Imam and his associate killed in the US in August 2016, the murder of six Muslims at a Quebec City Mosque, Canada, in January 2017, the killing of a 58-year old Muslim after a night prayer in London in June 2017 to the recent one, among many others, many Muslims have died and are still dying because of the monstrosity of Islamophobia.
Jumadah Thaniyah 24, 1440
March 1, 2019
President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR,
Verily, those who say, ‘Our Lord is Allah’ and further stand straight and steadfast, the angels descend on them (from time to time), saying, ‘Fear not, nor grieve! But receive the glad tidings of Paradise that you have been promised’. (Q.41:30)
Say: ‘O Allah! Lord of Power (and Rule), You give power to whom You wish, and You strip off power from whom You wish: You endow with honour whom You wish, and You bring low whom You wish. In Your hand is all good. Verily, over all things You have power.’ (Q.3:26)
(Those) who, in case We establish them in the earth, keep up the prayer, and bring the Zakah (i.e., pay the poor-dues) and command beneficence and forbid malfeasance; and to Allah belongs the end of the Commands. (Q.22:41)
In appreciation of the Almighty Allah for His boundless favours on Nigeria through Your Excellency and acknowledgement of His honour in making your re-election a success, the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), under the leadership of its President-General, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, CFR,mni, congratulates you on your electoral victory and wishes you another successful tenure as President of our beloved country.
Barely one week after the demise of Nigeria’s first Executive President, Alhaji Shehu Usman Shagari, who was buried on the last Saturday of December 2018, the Nigerian Muslim Ummah was bombarded with another breaking news, last Saturday, of the demise of a great and exemplary woman, Hajiya Aisha Lemu.
She was reported to have stopped breathing last Saturday (January 5, 2019) after a brief illness. Her demise has come to create a new leadership vacuum for the Nigerian Muslim womanhood the like of which a onetime American woman convert, Margaret Marcus, who adopted the name Maryam Jameelah after accepting Islam, left behind in 2012 in Pakistan after her demise.
Incidentally, the two great women were contemporaries in birth and in lifestyle. While Maryam Jameelah was born in New York City in 1934, Aisha Lemu who was named Bridget Honey at birth, was born in Poole Dorset, England 1940. Both women coincidentally embraced Islam in the same year (1961) and their roles in Islamic propagation were as similar as if they jointly planned them.
When the media announced the demise of a Nigerian political icon and first Executive President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Alhaji Shehu Aliyu Usman Shagari, last Friday with a reverberation effect across the world, many Nigerians with rich experience in various aspects of life began to dust their diaries for a recount of the episodes that propelled the deceased to have made history as much as he was himself made by history.
The late President Shehu Shagari’s life was like a huge elephant surrounded by blind men and women of letters and substance. To describe the features of that proverbial elephant, each of the persons that surrounded it would only be able to give an account of the area he/she is able to touch on the body of the mammoth animal and not the whole of it.