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Shun religious politics, MURIC urges Nigerians


Ishaq Akintola

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has urged Nigerians not to allow religious divides to deter them from voting for a credible candidate in the forth coming general elections. Director, MURIC, Professor Ishaq Akintola, in a statement said it did not believe in religious politics, and Muslims should consider the credibility of candidates ahead of religious sentiments.

Akintola said that Nigeria is blessed with good Christian candidates and credible Muslim candidates, urging Nigerians to create an enabling environment for the emergence of such good candidates. Narrowing the search to any particular religion or ethnic group, he argued, is not only self-defeating but also counter-productive.He said: “In a nutshell, we reiterate our conviction that we do not believe in religious politics. We Muslims are prepared to peacefully coexist with our Christian neighbours in Nigeria. We urge Muslims to get their PVC and vote for both Christian and Muslim candidates of their choice. The only proviso is that such candidates must be reformers and game changers, not looters, kleptomaniacs and politicians in the daytime but armed robbers at night.”

Citing a video clip of a Christian congregation in which the pastor is urging his audience not to vote for Muslim candidates, he described the video, which has gone viral, as divisive, parochial and archaic.He said: “Even as divisive and destructive as it is, the idea of Christians voting for Christians only still remains naïve and utopia. Who told CAN that it can install a Christian president with an all-Christian vote? It is a mirage. CAN is day-dreaming. What if Muslims also ask their fellow Muslims not to vote for any Christian candidate? What do you think will happen? But we will not descend so low. We will not ask Muslims not to vote for Christian candidates. Whoever is behind this video and the anti-Muslim campaign in general is promoting anarchy.”

The organization argued that Nigeria is a heterogeneous, multi-religious and multi-cultural project which belongs to nobody and it is bigger than any section. For any progress to be made, Muslims and Christians as well as all ethnic groups, it said, have to sink their differences. “We all have to work together. Nigeria is a wrong candidate for ‘possessing your possession’ slogans.”

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Ishaq AkintolaMURIC
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