urges Iran to stay-off IMN

By Monsuru Olowoopejo

The Muslim Rights Concern, MURIC, Monday, backed the Federal Government on proscription of Islamic Movement in Nigeria, IMN, (aka Shiites) describing the action as a move to strengthen peace and harmony in Nigeria.

MURIC added that the proscription of Shiites would prevent Nigeria from battling with another security threat like Boko Haram.

The Director, MURIC, Prof. Ishaq Akintola, in a statement made available to Vanguard, urged the Iranian Government not to interfere in internal affairs of a sovereign country, Nigeria.

According to the statement, “MURIC considers the proscription of IMN as a decisive and necessary action. Nigerians who sincerely want to see peace and stability must therefore give FG a free hand on this. Boko Haram would not have festered so badly had former President Goodluck Jonathan taken action when he should.

“It is also our considered opinion that members of the civil society and individuals defending the Shiites are not looking at the larger picture. The Federal Government has more comprehensive information. Civil society must ponder over Shiite ideology which rejects the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and all constituted authority within the country including traditional rulers,” it added.

According to the statement, we recognize the right of Shiites to practice their faith but strictly within recognised rules of engagement.

The organization stressed that IMN (aka Shiites) must respect fundamental rights of their neighbours before embarking on any action.

“They must genuinely renounce violence and pledge to stop the harassment of other citizens. Not only that, they must review their revolutionary tenets particularly that which refuses to recognise federal and state governments. It is treasonable to vehemently persist that they will only recognise an Islamic government based on Shiite ideology alone.”

Urging Nigerians to back the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration in proscribing IMN, MURIC argued that Shiites was proscribed for its violent propensity.

“It can be deproscribed when there is enough evidence that the group is no more violent. We appeal to Christian leaders to stop shedding crocodile tears over Shiite-FG imbroglio. We urge civil society and individual activists to desist from selective activism. Those who are silent on the hijab question vis a vis the oppression of the Muslim girl-child should not be quick to comment on the Shiite affair. It is sheer hypocrisy.”

While warning the Iranian government not to interfere in the face-off between the Federal Government and IMN, MURIC stated: “Iran is known to have executed Sunni Muslim leaders in its domain even without the latter engaging in any criminal activity.”

MURIC added that Iran has “no moral right to dictate to the Nigerian government on how to handle Shiite excesses. This is a sovereign nation and any attempt to export the Ayatollah-style bloody revolution to Nigeria will be stiffly resisted by mainstream Muslims in the country.

“For the avoidance of doubt, MURIC is not interested in promoting a Sunni-Shiite dichotomy. We are for all Islamic groups. We are simply here to project, promote and protect the rights of all adherents of Islam.

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“Nonetheless, we reject those who smear the image of Islam in any way and those who kill and maim followers of other religions and their fellow Muslims. We recognise the authority of the Federal Government of Nigeria as well as those of state governments and we will not associate with those who seek to render asunder the sovereignty of our great country, Nigeria.”



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