By Bashir Lucas Samson Lukman
Former Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai has reiterated Muslims’ regard for other religions, debunking the notion of Muslim-Muslim governance plan to Islamize Nigeria.
Gatekeepers News reports that El-Rufai said this while speaking at the 1Ummah Peace and Unity Convention 2023 in Lagos State, Southwest Nigeria.
The socio-religious gathering for Muslim faithful from within and outside Lagos was themed, “Changing Narrative: The Role Of The Ummah In A Rapidly Changing World.”
El-Rufai, while speaking on the topic, “Politics, Governance and Justice,” explored the role of religion and the need for Muslims’ participation in politics.
He referenced the Tinubu-Shettima dubbed Muslim-Muslim and how they had to ignore the claim of Islamization to achieve victory at the polls.
Going back to history, El-Rufai justified why the Muslim-Muslim ticket was an unnecessary cry, because in 1979, Nigeria’s first President, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, who was a Christian, had Prof. Ishaya Audu, Christian from Kaduna State, as his running mate, adding that there was not a thing as a Christian-Christian ticket.
Other examples are Gen. Yakubu Gowon and Joseph Akinwale, and Johnson Agunyi Ironsi and Babafemi Ogundipe.
He argued with reference to the first four caliphs of Islam that anyone, regardless of their religion, is safe under Muslim leadership as a true Muslim leader is just.
Citing himself as an example, he claimed no one can claim he was being unjust to non-Muslims during his tenure.
On his part, Sheikh Mohammad Salah delivered a lecture on Zakat as a tool for poverty eradication and building an inclusive economy.
The Sheikh explained instances that make one eligible to receive Zakah and those who should pay Zakah. The concept of Zakah in Islam, if employed by any society, will bridge the gap between the poor and the rich, elevating poverty and, in the religious sense, purifying the giver and the receiver.
Sheikh Salah further stressed the importance of giving. According to him, begging is frowned upon in Islam while giving is a noble and rewarding act; Thus, it is very important that Muslims strive to be givers. In addition, giving in Islam has its own etiquette. A giver must seek to please Allah alone without expecting any benefit from the receiver, even gratitude. – Qur’an 76:9
Ustadh Wahaj Tarin discussed “The History of Innovation, Recent Technological Advancements Through an Islamic Lens.” He explored the history of innovation, how far we have come, and how Muslims can position themselves to flow with current developments.
Tarin explained AI and, most importantly, automation. Today, some tasks humans perform can be performed by AI, even faster with automation. He cited Uber with their aim to have driverless cars, which may lead to many drivers losing their jobs. It is important for Muslims to understand these recent developments and position themselves accordingly.
Sheikh Wael Ibrahim, the founder of the Aware Academy, a platform dedicated to helping those who are struggling with pornography consumption, discussed balancing faith and mental well-being and how to seek professional help using Islamic guides. There was also Hajia Kabeerah Kafidipe who shared her journey from the movie industry to a conscious and practicing Muslim.
Mufti Ismail Menk’s sermon on “Being Agents of Dawah in a Pluralistic Society” explores the importance of kindness and compassion in da’wah. In a pluralistic society where, on the mere account of your name or appearance, a non-Muslim has his or her own prejudice, it is important to imbibe characteristics from the Qur’an and Sunnah that would change their misconceptions.