Once again, the gruesome murder of Miss Deborah Yakubu Samuel in the Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto,has to come to put some question marks on our concept of religious secularity and preachment of religious tolerance in Nigeria. It also inflicts our mind with hard thinking as to whether the creator whom we call with various names – Allah, God, Abasi, Osanobua and others, requires soldiers of men to fight his battle. Deborah Samuel, a 200 level student of Economics in the above named institution in Sokoto was reportedly murdered by fellow students for allegedly blaspheming against Islam.
Details of what culminated in her murder may not be very necessary for now other than ‘blaspheming’. But it must beadded that those who got involved in killing of fellow human beings for God are ignoramus lot and ignorant of the fact thatGod does not require anybody to fight his war for him. Often times, our Muslim brothers have demonstrated that they do not have much patience or tolerance for anybody who might choose to maintain any contrary or debatable view aboutIslam or his prophet and, have chosen to work and fight the war of Allah which is always condemnable by the right thinking members of the society.
It is always the case that while Christians in their practiced doctrine will offer to surrender every challenge and perceived persecution to God, to judge his persecutors, Muslims on their path always handle their own themselves and on the spot. This is not a matter of taking side. This writer is a southern Christian who believes that God is able to fight anybody that tries to put his name and his word into ridicule. But this writerlived and started life in the north for a long enough time. Ibelieve with that experience I’m in the best position to talk, and very dispassionately so about the north and its people aswell as their religion. The coming of Jesus Christ and ProphetMohammed ideally marked a different spiritual era where our religious adherents should be seen in their refined and divine modes and practice.
Any true believer of Islam will bear me witness for all I am going to say here: and thereof such believers among Muslims first, I have to say here that there are some very conscientious and good Muslims who do not believe in blood-letting to worship Allah. Their fellow Muslims even loathe them. These types of Muslims are called by their fellow Muslims as liberals who are ‘not willing to do the will of Allah’ like smiting the neck of fellow human being to ‘please’ Allah. But I believe the ‘will of Allah’ to this day should not continue with enthroning the pernicious doctrine that continually seeksthe elimination of those who do not belong in the same faith. I can swear in the name of God and even Allah, if they are two different entities, I have witnessed gruesome murders of fellow human beings in cold blood by Muslims and unnecessary eruption of violence for no just cause.
I am not trying to make it up, our Muslim brothers would always take violence and terror to anywhere and everywhere without thinking of the consequences. It is usually when others try to institute a balance of terror for self-defence that we often have what we always euphemise as sectarian crisis. I tell you one story to confirm my point of taking aggression to everywhere. In 2000 my organisation, The Pioneer newspaper had called me up as the Abuja city editor to move into Kaduna to report the sectarian crisis that was just erupting since my senior colleague and Kaduna city editor , Patrick Albert, was already at the headquarters in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital before the crisis began.
After that crisis I had decided to recount my honest experience and one very touchy of my experience was the orgy of death I saw. I chose to call it satanic elimination of a family. Lord have mercy! A man in a car was carrying a pregnant woman and two children which I believed were his family in his vehicle when he came face to face with Islamic youth protesters who had blocked the road. Yours truly had taken cover in the shrub by the Federal Technical College along Dawaki Road and the action the mob group took was gory: they first brought out the pregnant woman and butchered her from the belly.
The man of that vehicle was on his knees begging for mercy from his assailants who were not prepared to offer, and one after the other they butchered the two lads by holding them with their hands and cutting them into two. The man helplessly watched, still begging before they descended on the him without mercy even with his entire plea. It was one of the gory and nauseating scenes I had witnessed about that riot that has refused leaving my memory till this day. I have decided to narrate the experience in writing. But a Muslim Youth Corps member posted to serve with us read the story and immediately prepared a fight with me, even when he knew I was in home in my state. He knew that my analysis was true only that his fuses was that I reported the issue at all. I was conscious of the fact that the little friction could set the state ablaze so I avoided it. Muslims are always prepared to die anywhere provided Allah is mentioned.
In another encounter, I have been a direct victim of such violence before leaving Kaduna. I lived in Kaduna before and had a job to do at Jaji, the host city of Command and Staff College, and Infantry Centre and School. It was one of ourMuslim friends around a kiosk we have been patronising that startled me into it. He had asked, ‘You Christians use to call Jesus (Isa) the son of God, when did God marry to have a son?’ The issue could have been managed without any fracas because it is a frequently asked question among Muslims. Butsomething different happened that day where friendship suddenly turned soar. I have heard this before so, I was not bothered because I had the biblical position on this to support my submission about the person of Jesus, and I successfully and I think, convincingly did.
But after that I had asked to have an answer to one issue thathas been bothering me, which was why Muslims hate pig with a passion. The answer I got was that pig discovered water. I said but you should love pig for discovering water becausewater gives life. I then decided to quote from one magazine published in Iran that the holy prophet of Allah Mohammed had problem with the pig, that he was eaten by pig on the road side. I didn’t write the above allegation as my own idea, I only read and, Iran as I know is an Islamic country. Could the publication have been lying against the holy prophet? I am yet to be educated on the issue till this day. The next thing I heard was the shout of ‘Allah Akbar’ from the four ‘friends, and whenever a Muslim calls that it means something has gone wrong.
They were four and I was alone. So the only wise idea was to take to my heels. And because life was involved, my energy did not fail me. To cut the long story short, I ran into a drinking joint. But timely intervention of soldiers saved my life from the hands of those who were ready to pass their judgement on me. I have been a witness to our Muslim brothers going insane with little or no provocation to the extent that many lives are lost. Deborah Yakubu Samuel is one unfortunate victim and victim of religious intolerance. It is more so because this happened in educational institution where it is expected that their minds should have been liberated about things of God. But No!
A Muslim cleric the other day was trying to justify the killing of Miss Deborah Samuel, was on NTA trying to justify Deborah’s killing as he said that a truck load of cattle was burnt the other day in the East without any noise. I don’tknow why a person would make that kind of justification when he couldn’t tell us how many cattle is equal to onehuman life. But I do know that taking of human life is against God’s mind whichever way it is considered. This is apernicious doctrine scripted by man against fellow man in the name of religion.