The Nigerian Islamic human rights organization has berated the killing of 11 Muslims of Igbo extraction in the South East and South-South during the #EndSARS protests. The group also condemned the burning of Orlu Central Mosque as well as attacks on other mosques in the two sub-regions.
The group’s remarks were contained in a statement on Monday by its director, Professor Ishaq Akintola.
The statement which was obtained by The News Chronicle, reads: “We are shocked by news of mob attacks on Muslims of Igbo origin in the South East and South South during the #EndSARS demonstrations. At least 11 (eleven) Muslims were killed: 1 (one) in the South East and 10 (ten) in the South South. They were killed for no other reason than for being Muslims. Members of IPOB killed 10 Muslims in Port Harcourt. Seriki’s son was burnt beyond recognition. One Muslim was also killed in Imo State while four others were injured. Orlu Central Mosque was completely destroyed by arsonists while Hausa markets worth millions of naira were also destroyed.
“MURIC is in possession of two video clips that have gone viral. One was shot by renowned militant leader, Alhaji Mujahid Asari Dokubo. In the first video, Asari Dokubo berated the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its leadership for allowing IPOB to become a group that hates Muslims and one that hunts them to the point of death.
“In the second video, an unidentified Igbo woman in hijab who spoke Igbo language intermittently said, ‘I want to ask a question from my fellow Ibo brothers and sisters. Please, I want to know. Anything that happens in the East, you people will go after Ibo Muslims. You people will be chanting, ‘kill all the Ibo Muslims, Kill all the Ibo Muslims. Are we no longer your blood? What is it that we are looking for? All of us were protesting. We were chanting for good government. Ayin sonaa chummuo. At the middle, udon summa isin muomuo, diban unonpla. At the middle, you turn around. Have you seen what is happening? Both of us were pursuing spirit. At the middle, almost to catch the spirit, you turn around and said ‘I am smelling spirit spirit (sic). Is it good? Please, please, you people should leave everybody to practice his own religion.’
“MURIC strongly condemns the killing of Muslims in Igboland. We believe that it is the climax of an undercurrent of persecution, intimidation, and humiliation of Igbo Muslims by their fellow Igbo. Families of Igbo Christians who revert to Islam are boycotted and disowned. They are denied all rights and privileges, including the right to inherit. State governments in the East and South-South deprive Muslims of their Allah-given fundamental human rights. We have the details and these will be revealed in due course.
“In the same vein, we hold the governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, responsible for the attack on Muslims in the South-South. His ban on IPOB is mere lip-service. He personally hates Muslims and detests the sight of mosques. He was responsible for the destruction of the Trans Amadi Central Mosque in August 2019. Wike was severally quoted to have declared Rivers State a Christian State not too long ago. We have set the machinery in motion to report him to the United Nations and the International Criminal Court (ICC) at the Hague for incitement and for crimes against humanity.
“We therefore hang the killing of Muslims in Port Harcourt on his neck. If the witch cried yesterday and the child dies today, do we need to start searching for the killer of that child? IPOB reasoned that there is no raison d’etre for Muslims to live in Rivers State since the state had been declared a Christian State by the governor. Wike gave IPOB the licence to kill Muslims.
“To our Muslim brothers in the South East and South South, we send fraternal sympathy. Our solidarity with you is forever. Our love for you cannot be dissolved by geographical boundaries. We feel your tribulation. Your pains hit our bones to the very marrows. We share your grief. Fear not, for you are not alone. Apart from Almighty Allah who is always with you, we, your brothers and sisters North and South West of Nigeria stand up to demand justice for you. Remain steadfast in your faith, Islam. Your lamentations shall not be in vain and we will not stop until justice is not only delivered but is seen to have been delivered”.
The group said in order to calm frayed nerves, the following should be met:
- The setting up of a judicial commission of inquiry into the killing of Muslims in the South-South as well as the burning of Orlu Central Mosque;
- The Rivers State Government must pay compensation to the families of the victims within a period not exceeding three months;
- Imo State Government must rebuild and re-equip Orlu Central Mosque within the same period;
- The hospital bills of all Muslims injured during the attacks must be paid by the state governments and
- All Muslims who lost properties due to attacks during the period must be compensated.
“We are in constant contact with the victims and the reparations will be closely monitored. Meanwhile we appeal to Muslims throughout Nigeria to refrain from seeking vengeance. There must be no reprisals of any kind. We urge Muslims to remain calm and watchful. Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom,” the statement said.