By AUSTIN OWOICHO, Abuja
Nigerian Muslims joined their counterparts all over the world in commencing this year’s Ramadan fast on Monday 6th May, 2019. The Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, announced the sighting of the Ramadan crescent on Sunday evening.
Meanwhile the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has felicitated with the Sultan of Sokoto and leaders of all Islamic organisations in the country. MURIC also congratulated President Muhammadu Buhari and all state governors for witnessing the commencement of the month of Ramadan.
In a press statement issued on Monday, 6th May, 2019, the Islamic human rights organization called on Nigerian Muslims to seize the opportunity of the holy month and the spiritual power which Allah has endowed fasting Muslims to supplicate for the freedom of Christian girls like Leah Sharibu and the Chibok girls who are still in the hands of Boko Haram. The statement was signed by Professor Ishaq Akintola, Founder and Director of the organization.
“We must admit that the continued stay of Leah Sharibu and the Chibok girls in Boko Haram’s detention camp is a dark spot on Nigeria’s white linen.
“Whereas the Federal Government (FG), the Muslim Ummah and its leadership desire freedom for those innocent girls, the insurgents are keeping them in captivity in order to achieve their diabolical aims, namely, to embarrass FG, to use them as human shields, to boost their negotiation power and to use them as a tool for setting Nigerian Christians and their Muslim compatriots against each other.
“The overall objective of Boko Haram is to ignite a religious war. That was why they started attacking places of worship. It was when that ploy failed that they resorted to abducting Christian girls with the hope of provoking Christiandom. This is why Nigeria’s religious leaders must exercise extra patience. They must not play into the hands of the insurgents. They must refrain from emotional outbursts. Instead, they must sink their differences and come together in the name of humanity to fight the evil in their midst. We reiterate that terrorists have no religion.
“This is why Nigerian Muslims must use prayers to defeat the enemy and secure freedom for our daughters. We feel their absence in our midst. We feel the pain of their closest relations. Our hearts go out to them wherever they may be. Prayer is the sword of the believer and a family that fasts together evolves and retains an unbreakable spiritual bond. Nigerian Muslims must invoke the incomparable spiritual might of Ramadan to neutralize the supposedly invincible power of Boko Haram to set Leah Sharibu and the Chibok girls free.”
MURIC also called for prayers for peace, security, political stability and economic buoyance for Nigeria.
“Furthermore, we must use that special spiritual power of Ramadan to crush all powers of darkness and all agents of evil who are behind the incessant killings and kidnappings in Nigeria. Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, ‘When Ramadan comes, Shaytan is put in chains’. It is high time Nigerian Muslims utilized this Islamic truism to destroy killers and kidnappers.
“Before we stop hitting the keyboard, we call on fasting Muslims to make freedom for Leah Sharibu and the Chibok girls their prayer points during this Ramadan. Pray that Nigeria is emancipated from ruthless killers and kidnappers. Pray for the exposure of rebellious subjects and enemies of peace. Pray for total security. Pray also for economic buoyancy and political stability”.