MURIC felicitates with Muslims on hijrah new year, advocates free malaria treatment
The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has felicitated with the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs in Nigeria (NSCIA), Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III and the entire Muslims of the federation on the occasion of the new Islamic year 1440.
Director of the human rights organization, Professor Ishaq Akintola in his hijrah message called on Federal Governemnt to declare a new policy of free malaria treatment for all Nigerians. FG should also start working on modalities for declaring every first day of Muharram (Hijrah Day) a holiday in Nigeria as from 2019.
“ Federal Government’s should pay attention to the malaria scourge which is causing a lot of havoc in the country, particularly among the poor, whose lives are wasted simply because they cannot afford even as little as five hundred naira to buy drugs at the early stage of the malaria symptom before their situation worsens.
Akintola said: “Though malaria is not peculiar to Nigeria alone as it affects about 3.3 billion people or half of the world’s population in 106 countries, Nigeria’s case is pathetic because we have the money to give malaria a good fight but corruption, greed and avarice will not allow our leaders to allocate enough funds to the struggle.
“Just one percent of the Nigerian population arrogates 85 percent of the country’s wealth to themselves, leaving a paltry 15 percent of our wealth to the remaining 99 percent of the population. Nigeria is a monumental tragedy when it comes to the distribution of wealth. The budgetary allocation to the heath sector year after year falls short of the 15 per cent recommended at the African Health Summit in Abuja more than ten years ago. Our lawmakers are not worried so long as they make part of the one per cent of the population who are oppressing the hoi polloi.
“As a result of the lackadaisical and selfish attitude of the political class to public health care, malaria is now a risk for 97 per cent of Nigeria’s population. There are an estimated 100 million malaria cases in the country today. Malaria kills more than 300,000 poor people every year in this country and it contributes to an estimated 11 per cent of maternal mortality”.
MURIC therefore appealed to the Federal Government of Nigeria (FG) to give Nigerians free malaria treatment.He also requested that Federal Government should declare Hijrah day as a holiday.
He said: “We are gradually making a case against FG. This country is heavily Christianised. The paraphernalia of government are being used to favour Christianity only. Muslims are ignored. It is treatments like this, which cause disaffection. Muslims are not terrorists. We are using peaceful means to demand our Allah-given fundamental rights now but government continues to ignore us.
“It is the insistence of those in position of authority to continue on the path of deprivation and violation of the rights of Muslims which gives extremist elements the chance to vent their spleen. This is what often leads to violence. We assert that justice is the soul of peace. Nobody who denies one can get the other.