The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has hailed the management of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) for shifting the examination slated for the Jumu’ah period last Friday, 16thAugust, 2019, in order to allow Muslim candidates to attend the mosque.
NDLEA had fixed DDR examination for 1130 to 1330 hours (i.e. 11.30 am to 1.30 pm) on that Friday. However, MURIC in a followup statement dated 15thAugust, 2019, appealed to the drug enforcement agency to consider the plight of Muslim candidates who should be in the mosque at that period.
In a dramatic twist last Friday, NDLEA announced a shift in the timing of the examination which eventually began by 3 pm on that day after the Muslim candidates had returned from the mosques. The shift was effective in all NDLEA’s examination centres throughout Nigeria.
In a statement signed by its Director and Founder, Professor Ishaq Akintola, on Monday, 19thAugust, 2019, MURIC expressed its delight with the NDLEA authorities for shifting the examination.
“We commend NDLEA authorities for shifting the examination billed for the Jumu‘ah period. This agency has exhibited administrative competence, maturity in industrial relations and religious tolerance. This is the kind of attitude we need in Nigeria to foster peace and tranquility. We salute NDLEA.
The human rights organization seized the opportunity to disabuse the minds of Nigerians about its methods of operation.
“Permit us to seize this opportunity to disabuse the minds of Nigerians concerning ourmodus operandis. Those who regard MURIC as an extremist group have missed the point. Of course we are aware that many Nigerians know the truth about us. But some just want to give a dog a bad name in order to hang it. This NDLEA affair has shown the whole world that we do not mind going the extra mile to make our stand known through dialogue. We kept making appeals to the NDLEA management until they became convinced that we have good intention. We made no threats. We flexed no muscles. It is not in our character.
“We just continued to explain the plight of those Muslim candidates to the NDLEA authorities until they understood our point of view. This indicates that those who oppress Muslims sometimes do so due to lack of understanding of the Muslim viewpoint or due to communication gap. It is this gap that MURIC seeks to fill from time to time in order to douse tension and to create an atmosphere which is conducive to peaceful coexistence.
We therefore urge Nigerians to see MURIC in its true character: a pacific organization, peace-loving, law-abiding and dialogue-prone. We detest violence and this is why our motto is: ‘Dialogue, Not Violence’. As a major mechanism in our operations, we open dialogue with institutions, employers and agencies in order to intervene on behalf of aggrieved Muslims. We believe that this is better than resorting to spontaneous violence. Ours is therefore a re-engineering effort.
We are middle-roaders and socio-intellectual jihadists seeking freedom for the oppressed, food for hungry Nigerians, healing for the sick, clothing apparels for the naked and shelter for the homeless. We are non-violent jihadists fighting corruption and extravagance, seeking freedom of worship for all and justice for the persecuted.”
“MURIC’s vision of Nigeria is that of a nation where people live together in peace and harmony, a nation in which no one is oppressed, a nation where merit takes priority, a nation where people of all faiths and ethnicities peacefully coexist, a nation where every citizen enjoys Allah-given fundamental human rights regardless of class, creed, or ethnicity.
“We invite Nigerian Muslims to this paradigm shift. Nigeria has witnessed too many religious crises. It is time to build a strong bridge across the cultures. We should approach the authorities to table our grudges whenever there are issues. Our evidence of dialogue or attempted dialogue will become a powerful weapon against the oppressor when the chips are down.
This is what Muslims do in civilized communities like Britain, Germany, the United States, etc and the authorities listen to them. Muslims must make superior arguments their most potent weapon, not spontaneous violence. It is time to build Nigeria.