National Vice-President, All Muslim Schools, Imam Sulaiman Antonio, tells FEMI MAKINDE that the claim that Boko Haram and herdsmen are fighting for Islamisation agenda is not correct
Do you agree with former President Olusegun Obasanjo on his claim that Boko Haram and herdsmen are fighting for Islamisation and Fulanisation of Nigeria and Africa?
The assertion is not correct. Muslims are peace-loving people. Muslims, as far as I know, are not supporting Boko Haram to k*ll anybody because it is against the injunction of Allah. Anybody that kills is not doing so for Islam because Islam is against it. There is even punishment if one kills accidentally let alone going after innocent people to kill them.
Herdsmen are neither k*lling nor destroying property to propagate Islam. Let it be known that Muslims are not the ones sponsoring them to kill and to maim. Allah said it expressly in the Koran that whoever kills intentionally will go to hell fire. So those killing are not doing so to spread Islam and Islam frowns on such.
Those k*lling are doing so for either political reason or other reasons best known to them but certainly not to propagate Islam. We should not make the mistake of mixing politics with religion. In the South-West here, almost all the families have a mixture of Christians and Muslims.
So, how logical is that, that somebody will go and target his people because he wants to convert them to Islam. Allah has stated it in the Koran that he could have made the whole world to be Muslims and to speak one language if he wished. So, whoever is killing or destroying other’s properties does not belong to Allah and such is not a true Muslim.
How will you react to the claims of CAN that it is aware of the plans of the Organisation of Islamic Countries to Islamise the entire Africa?
There are things I do not go into because I don’t have interest in it. But before we entered into this millennium, there was noise all over that certain things would happen by the year 2000. How many of those things have happened now? Some also said everybody would be for Christ by the year 2000 but year 2000 has come and gone. This is 19 years after that. Has that happened? So, to answer your question, this is not true.
Nobody is attempting to Islamise Nigeria or Africa because it is not possible. The only time I can agree that there will be Islamisation of the country or Africa is if I open my Koran and I find it written there that Allah has said the whole country will turn to Muslims. But as long as it is not written there, I do not believe it and I am sure nobody is making any attempt to Islamise Nigeria. If it is not from God, then it cannot be. Even if anybody is planning that, it cannot happen. It cannot happen because nobody can dictate to God. Prophets cannot even dictate to God; so, if anybody is even thinking about that, it cannot work. It cannot work because not even the prophets know the time they would die. Nobody has such power to covert others.
But don’t you think the fears of the Christians are justified?
Those k*lling others are just creating fear in society but they do not have the backing of genuine Muslims because Allah does not send anybody to kill. It is against His will. These killings being perpetrated by these herdsmen they are talking about, their activities are more political but certainly not religion. If you go to a motor park, you will see those causing trouble, bearing Christian and Muslim names. So, you cannot say those ones are Muslims or Christians. There are persons bearing Christian names, who kill. Are we going to call those ones Christians? It is the same things. Those who bear Muslim names and are engaged in k*llings cannot be said to be Muslims. We need to learn to live together in peace and erase this suspicion.
The herdsmen are carrying out their own agenda but they are not doing that for Islam. They have those sponsoring them and I think security agencies should go after them. Whoever kills must be arrested and punished. Allah does not support killing and nobody can say he is killg for Allah. What they are doing does not have anything to do with Islam. We need to wake up and get out of whatever is drawing us back as a nation. Nobody can fight for God. Anybody k*lling in the name of God is not a child of God. Religious leaders or anybody