By Bashir Bello
KATSINA – The Islamic Movement of Nigeria, IMN otherwise known as Shiites says it doors are open for dialogue with the federal government without condition.
The group said it understand the government but the government have failed to understand them.
The Interim Leader of Muslim Brothers in Nigeria, Malam Yakubu Yahaya stated this while addressing a press conference in Katsina in place of the usual symbolic trek or procession to mark the Arba’een (40th) day of the murder of Imam Hussein, the grandson of Prophet Muhammad who was killed on the 10th of Muharam.
Malam Yahaya said it is not fighting the government but instead it is the government that chose to fight them by attacking and disrupting it processions.
He said in the last Ashura procession about 17 of it members were killed across the country and in states such as Bauchi and Katsina among others while over 30 others were arrested.
According to him, “Our doors are open for dialogue for the government and whoever who wants to dialogue with us. Our doors are open anytime, without condition for dialogue. Because we understand government, it is the government that doesn’t understand us. If they seek our hands of friendship, we are ever ready.
“We are peace loving people. And we have no country other than Nigeria, so we won’t allow anybody to use us to disstabilize the peace of the country.
“We are not fighting the government because we understand them but it is the government that are fighting and attacking us because they don’t understand our religion. Our religion permits us to rally during the observation of our various occasional events so if they agree that we have a religion they should allow us practice our religion the way we understand it. If there is a law or verse from the Holy books that prohibits our activities they should prove it to us,”
On the last Ashura procession in the country, he said, “Over 30 of our members were arrested in the last Ashura procession, some were on bail and going to court.
“17 of our members were killed across the country, six in Bauchi, in Katsina, 2 were in Malumfashi and so on. Our women have turned to widows and the children now orphans.
“Even, yesterday (Friday) our procession in Abuja was disrupted. Our people were attacked. We carry out our processions without arms,” Malam Yahaya however said.
Recall that the Movement (IMN) staged a march in Abuja on Friday to observe the Arba’een symbolic trek against the warning of the security agencies that the group remained banned, leading to the arrest of 15 members of the group in Abuja.