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Islamic Group MURIC demands Establishment of Sharia Courts in South-West



Islamic Group MURIC ask Implementation of "Reliefs" with Restructuring, Seek Establishment of Sharia Courts in South-West - BellaNaija

Ishaq Akintola, President, MURIC.

Islamic rights group Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) has asked that the Federal Government implement certain reliefs for Muslims in the country along with restructuring.

MURIC president, Ishaq Akintola, in the statement released to Premium Times, asked that Friday be declared a work free day, and should “assume parity with the Christians’ Sunday.”

The group also asked that uniformed groups in Nigeria be allowed to wear Islamic garbs like the hijab.

MURIC also lamented the absence of Sharia courts in the South-West, and asked that they be established.

Read the full statement below:


The Federal Government appears set for restructuring particularly with the setting up of a committee on this crucial matter by the ruling party, the All Peoples’ Congress (APC). Restructuring became popular after the South East, South South and a section of the South West complained about marginalization. Several politicians from both the opposition and the ruling party have since spoken in support of this clamour.

However, we of the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) dissociate ourselves from all agitations for secession. We condemn all irredentist movements rearing their ugly heads in Southern Nigeria, particularly the agitation for the creation of Oduduwa Republic. We affirm clearly, unambiguously and unequivocally, that Muslim leaders in Yorubaland were not carried along before those demands were tabled. Nonetheless, just as some ethnic groups have complained of disaffections, we contend that Nigerian Muslims also nurse serious grudges bordering on marginalization against the Nigerian state.

We must start from the lanes of history because today was born from the wombs of yesterday. Islam has been in Nigeria since the 11th century and the British met Islam on ground when they arrived in the 19th century (800 years later). The British did not deem it fit to observe the rules of natural justice when they colonized the country as all Islamic landmarks were eliminated and supplanted with a wholly Christian system.

This injustice may have been at the root of frequent religious crisis in Nigeria because successive governments after independence refused to listen to the agitations of Muslims for a review of the status quo. The issues being raised by Muslims are listed in the following paragraphs so that the authorities may address them when restructuring eventually begins.

One: Nigerians enjoy a total of eight (8) public holidays in a year. These are Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Id al-Kabir, Id al-Fitr and Maulud an-Nabiyy. Five (5) of the eight holidays belong to Christians (Christmas Day, Boxing Day, 1st January, i.e, New Year Day, Good Friday and Easter Monday). Only three (3) holidays belong to Muslims, viz, Id al-Kabir, Id al-Fitr and Maulud an-Nabiyy.

Restructuring should give Muslims 1st Muharram. This will bring the total number of Muslim holidays to four while Christian holidays remain five.

Two: Christian marriages contracted inside churches or registries are held sacrosanct everywhere in Nigeria whereas Muslim marriages (nikah) are not recognized for any official purpose. Muslim couples find themselves in a cul de sac each time they presented their Islamic marriage certificates for official purposes. It is paradoxical that in a democracy, one marriage conducted by a religious group is acceptable while the other is not. What kind of constitution is Nigeria using?

Islamic marriages should be recognized in all official circles where Christian marriages are recognized. The Nigerian Marriage Act (1990) should therefore be revisited.

Three: Nigeria has a two-day weekend, viz, Saturday and Sunday. Saturday was a half day during the colonial era and Sunday was the only full day at the weekend. However, Saturday was made a full day to favour the Seventh Day Adventists, a Christian denomination during the regime of General Yakubu Gowon, a Christian military ruler. It is very clear, therefore, that the two weekend days recognized in Nigeria belong to Christians while Muslims have none since Friday, the Muslim day of worship, remains a working day.

It is pertinent to note that Friday was a work-free day until the British brought Christianity and stopped Muslims from enjoying their Allah-given fundamental human right. The relief we are seeking through restructuring is that Friday should be declared free to assume parity with the Christians’ Sunday. While we are not seeking anarchy, we are confident that the Federal Government (FG) has all the paraphernalia of administration to work out the modalities.

Four: Immigration officials engage in regular stereotyping of Muslims who apply for international passports. They intimidate Muslims particularly at the point of taking pictures. Muslim males are ordered to remove their caps; Imams are coerced into removing their turbans; bearded Muslims are compelled to shave or trim their beards; hijab-wearing Muslim women are made to remove their hijabs or ordered to draw their hijab backwards to reveal their ears. The same scenario plays itself out in driving licence, national identity card offices and during registration for elections.

In the process, thousands of Muslims have been denied international passports, driving licences and national identity cards while millions have been disenfranchised during elections. The authorities must find a way of stopping the persecution and profiling of Muslims.

Five: Uniformed groups in Nigeria, including the army, police, uniformed voluntary groups, nurses, the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), students of primary and secondary schools, etc, use uniforms designed by the Christian colonialists. These uniforms should have been reviewed after independence because they only suit the Christians. Some of them constitute breaches to Islamic dress code and offend the sensibility of Muslims who are compelled to wear the uniforms regardless of their inner feeling of resentment.

In view of the fact that Western countries like Britain, Canada and the United States have designed uniforms with hijab for their female Muslim police, soldiers, students, etc, Nigeria’s restructuring authorities should borrow a leaf from those countries.

Six: There is no single Shari’ah court in South Western Nigeria where Muslims constitute the majority. This is contrary to what obtained in Yorubaland before the advent of the British. There were Shariah courts in Ede, Iwo, Ikirun, Ibadan, etc. Yoruba Muslims are now compelled to take their civil matters like inheritance, marriage, etc to Christo-Western courts. This is preposterous and unacceptable.

We demand the establishment of Shariah courts in all South Western states including Edo State where there is a significant percentage of Muslims.

We call the attention of FG and the restructuring committee of the APC to the above six reliefs. Muslims are in bondage in this country and we believe that restructuring should emancipate people in captivity. APC promised change. This change can only be meaningful to us if it breaks the shackles around our necks. We have begged enough for the restoration of our Allah-given and fundamental human rights. We are tired of begging. Restructuring is about reapportioning the dividends of democracy such that it goes round and it is not restricted to one section.

Colonial administration was grossly unfair to Muslims. Nigeria was Christianised by Britain and Muslims bore the brunt. We suffered forceful conversion, denial of rightful employment and even worse forms of persecution. But what is most disappointing is the policy of exclusion adopted by post-independence governments.

On a final note, we demand full integration and full recognition as bona fide citizens of Nigeria, not second or third class citizens. We are the aggrieved party. The British most brutally and most unjustly took all we had from us, giving us nothing in return and offering no relief. It has continued to give us a feeling of rejection, marginalization, denial of the dividends of democracy and lack of a sense of belonging. The time for redress is now and our six-point relief is here for all to digest.

Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)


  1. Jide

    October 10, 2017 at 4:41 pm


    • Uberhaute looks

      October 11, 2017 at 9:57 am

      We laugh and call it a joke but here under our noses, it will happen and we will do nothing about it.
      What this professor just did here is to confirm the fear of so many Nigerians about Islam taking over someday soon.
      How can we move forward and take our place in the committee of nations if we still reason like this? Kai!

    • Dunkwale

      October 12, 2017 at 5:20 am

      IS islam a goverment or A religion ?! A question should have been asked 1400 years ago!

  2. NaijaPeopleSha

    October 10, 2017 at 5:22 pm

    My people, abeg join me in laughter ????

    • FasholasLover

      October 10, 2017 at 10:10 pm

      I join you. I actually started laughing before l saw your comment. What got me is “….Muslims are in bondage in this country and we believe that restructuring should emancipate people in captivity” Imagine your nurse in a Ninja turtle outfit. Loooooooooooooooooooolz

  3. mulikat

    October 10, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    Nonsense,why cant you move back to Norther Naija or join Boko Haram.we yoruba are didfferent when comes to religion, forget, every yoruba families have 3 religion, Christian,Muslims and our Traditional religion.yoruba become Muslims and christian just 200 yrs ago,that 800 years of Islam is kanuri people that have islam first fool. even Hausa became muslims during Usman dan fodio,which is 200 ysr ago also,even that 800 ys nothing like naija,naija is 100 sy force marriage.

  4. Mimz

    October 10, 2017 at 5:26 pm

    What type of mentality is this??!!!!!!!

  5. Amazing

    October 10, 2017 at 5:31 pm

    Nigeria by the Constitution is a secular state. Religion is the reason why this country is still in the 20th century while others have moved forward. While forward thinking countries are thinking of new inventions this is what somebody wakes up to agitate for in this day and age.

  6. The Real Oma

    October 10, 2017 at 6:21 pm

    Awon werey

  7. SS

    October 10, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    let me use my mother tongue to write, boda se egba dun sha? ara yin oya, religion is the reason this country is in shambles.

    • j

      October 10, 2017 at 8:57 pm

      can i like your comment multiple times!!!!!!!

  8. Funmilola

    October 10, 2017 at 7:54 pm

    Joke….filled with so much venom, we take religion to the extreme so much in this country.
    no wonder we aren’t moving forward.So, this is what restructuring means to you Abi?

  9. Adamazi

    October 10, 2017 at 8:00 pm

    “Islam has been in Nigeria since the 11th century and the British met Islam on ground when they arrived in the 19th century (800 years later).”

    Nigeria existed where in 11th century? LMAO!!! This man claims to be a professor. Chaiiii

  10. Ephi

    October 10, 2017 at 8:20 pm

    And this one is a Professor ? You can just imagine the mental state of the illiterates if a professor (who one would expect should be open minded) is reasoning this way.

  11. John

    October 10, 2017 at 8:43 pm

    I know some may argue that these people do not like to share information but surely if you ask six of them, at least one will give you the information you need. The other five may give you half the information but when you put it all together, you should have something useable……………….I love this article..gonna put this into practice…..nice one..thanks…

  12. J

    October 10, 2017 at 8:56 pm

    isnt it funny how they said New year is a christian holiday and they want fridays free as well, this article was pure jokes!

  13. nnenne

    October 10, 2017 at 11:24 pm

    Nigeria should then split between religious line. Join any side with your preferred religion .
    Enough of this nonsense already!

  14. Mohammad

    October 11, 2017 at 1:19 am

    But this man is an idiot. 5 Christian holidays and three Muslim ones is incorrect. The five he quoted are Christmas and Boxing Day (actually one holiday but two days off), Good Friday and Easter Monday (actually one holiday and two days off) and New Year’s Day (one day off). We have exactly the same total number of Muslim ones: two days off for Eid el-Fitr, two days off for Eid el-Adha (or Kabir) and one day off for Eid el-Maulud.

    This guy is just a rabble rouser. What about our own traditional religions that have been in the area now called Nigeria even before Islam? My friend gerrarahia!

  15. Anonymous

    October 11, 2017 at 6:44 am

    Other nations are trying to build on mars, Silicon Valley is booming,, Tech corridors everywhere and this guy has a microphone and this is all he can think or say? Sharia in yorubaland? More amputees to dole n100 to? This is wicked and backwards.

  16. Anon

    October 11, 2017 at 6:55 am

    BN please stop deleting my comments. If these looney tunes cannot say ordoanytbing to Mae naija better they should shut up. People are researching cancer cures, 30 year olds created Facebook and most of the SM and you are talking Sharia in yorubaland? Go to mars and practice it and drop the amputees on the moon.

  17. Anon

    October 11, 2017 at 6:59 am

    Take the backwardness of sharia with you and relocate to Zamfara. Yorubas have always tolerated each other’s religion, don’t go and collect money from outside to destroy yorubaland with boko type legalism in a multi religious place like yorubaland. Tell your sponsors we are too diverse and too educated for such a project

  18. Ade.E

    October 11, 2017 at 7:42 am

    It was people like him (Northern counterparts) who pushed for sharia in the north, years later, It lead to bokoharam and civil unrest in the northern region. It is common knowledge that the first states to accept sharia are now the poorest, most violent, poverty stricken states.

  19. Moniker

    October 11, 2017 at 8:06 am

    He said Christians have the holidays. But we all don’t go to work on those days. Abi work de open for muslims on ‘christian holidays’? I love BN readers. I just de laugh

  20. Nneka

    October 11, 2017 at 10:15 am

    This is just absurd. How can a cleric decide to affiliate the clamour for restructuring to that of religious inequalities? We have better issues to worry about in Nigeria. That is the problem we have with most religious bodies. They incite their followers using subtle words and crafty myopic ideologies. Please Nigerians, choose what you want to hear. This is another plot to bring about disunity in the South.

  21. Annoyed Christian

    October 11, 2017 at 1:03 pm

    This person harbours a lot of ill-intent and hatred towards Christians, this was actually scary to read. This is how they incite their daft followers, before you know it they start killing people.

    Also, he is being disingenuous, in which country are Muslims marginalized? Certainly not Nigeria, he needs to read the constitution very well, and see how Islam supersedes everything else (one of the reasons why no one could do anything to Yerima, because his marriage to a minor was done under Islamic law, the state couldn’t do anything about it), this is just one example.

    A professor that doesn’t know basic history or the first thing about the constitution, what a tragedy.
    The British “Christianized” Nigeria yet handed power over to the Muslim North?
    How many Muslims have governed Nigeria compared to Christians or other Nigerians?
    Who has predominantly held power and position in this country over the rest? Muslims.
    Don’t hate Christians for the way Northern Muslims reap all these benefits and discriminate against those from the South. That one is not our business.

    If he wants Sharia Law that badly, he should relocate to any of the 13 states that have it as their official law.
    Anyone who says Muslims are marginalized in Nigeria is a big liar from the pit of hell.
    You are the most privileged group in this country, stop telling lies and looking for reasons to hate and attack Christians.

    And the point about international passports and immigration just shows how unexposed he is, there is an international standard for all International passports, these laws were not made by Nigeria, so if an immigration officer asks to see your ears in your passport picture, he is not trying to punish you because you’re a Muslim.
    Travel more and see the world, fake professor.

    The South West has always been a model of unity and ethnic plurality but in recent years we’re seeing an increase in fundamentalism among certain Muslims there, y’all better nip that shit in the bud, Christians are not the cause of your problems. Rubbish.

  22. Naris

    October 11, 2017 at 1:03 pm

    All those that voted for Buhari should clap and cheer for joy. The Nigeria you voted for is almost upon us. Your tribalistic, deceitful and extremely backward leader has broken the chains of all his like minded followers, and this is what we are reaping today.
    Herdsnem, insubordibate juniors, above the law efcc and now mad professors talking crap.
    Welcome to mad land. 2019 is almost here. Please note again. There’s N24billion set aside to ensure the dream becomes reality.

  23. Barrister

    October 11, 2017 at 1:14 pm

    I’ve known this man on TV since I was a teenager, then I was open minded about this religion but his hate against Christianity is something else. He disappeared from our TV screen when Boko Haram was at its peak in the country only for him to then re emerge and was preaching peace. Well, I guess he just can’t help himself.

  24. Onyi

    October 11, 2017 at 1:44 pm

    This is so funny,so this one is a professor.

  25. frosh

    October 11, 2017 at 1:45 pm

    he lost me at Christians have 5 public holidays including New Years? Since when is that a Christian celebration. really bro? get a proper education please. smdh

  26. Momotaro

    October 13, 2017 at 5:36 am

    This is actually scary. So there are people who think New Years is a Christian holiday. Wawu. This guy is hIgh on Oshogbo weed. It is offensive that these fools want to tarnish the call for restructuring with religion. Restructuring has nothing to do with Islam or any religion. It’s this type of olodo rabata that will support Boko Haram. He can’t hide his hatred and disdain for Christians. I’m not even ChrIstian but I am quite offended by these declarations. Moderate Muslims in Nigeria need to take a stand against these kinds of extremists. Stop sitting and folding your arms while some ignoramus tarnishes your beliefs and your religion with extremism. Stop staying silent if you know better. Stop keeping quiet if you want Nigeria to be a better place. Professor my left ass cheek. How can this thing be a professor?

    Extremism in Nigeria is what made me let go of religion entirely. I can’t deal.

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