Monday, 21 March 2016

Still on the Kaduna State Religious Preaching Bill... By Yakub Aliyu

Still on the Kaduna State Religious Preaching Bill...

Now it seems that both Muslim and Christian religious leaders are not sincere and even overtly hypocritical. And the media is also complicit in playing the two sides just to achieve their commercial interests.

Otherwise, if Muslim and Christian leaders are truthful to their calling why are they afraid of subjecting themselves to the laws of the land?

Are they telling us that all that we hear in cassettes and CDs of some preachers in the markets, motor parks, along the road side and other public arenas, with all the hate speeches and outright charlatanism should be left without any check, even if that will, with time, result in some violence and killings, as we have experienced in the last two decades or so?

Since 1999, Kaduna State had recorded more than 1,500 deaths arising from simple altercations on religious grounds.

Should we just overlook the master plans of Zaria, Kafanchan, Kaduna, Saminaka and other urban settings just because some people would want to build mosques and churches, no matter how inconvenient to the rest of the citizens and carry on with preachings and evangelism?

Why are they just discovering the law now when it has been subsisting since 1984? Is it to generate another mayhem in the name of religion?

All reasonable people should please come forward and support the Kaduna State Government on this legislation.

It is a lie out of a pit of hell to presume that you cannot play religious cassette from your car as the newspapers are suggesting unless of course the intent is to harm.

The law is vey clear. Let there be some order in how we conduct ourselves religiously. It has not been like that even in the 1980s whereby people go around with blazing speakers all over the place because of evangelism.

Why should it be now? And can't wisdom prevail in what we do? And the law openly endorsed CAN and JNI, as umbrellas of the two dominant religions.  a Muslims and a Christians no longer subscribing to these umbrellas or what?

As some one said you come today and preach, denigrating the other faith and get some 100 converts, only for the next day to have a counter preacher who comes to undo you and ended up with a religious clash that lead to deaths of 1000 people.

Definitely the government has a responsibility to ensure that demagogues and sectarian forces do not undermine the social order.

In North Africa, an Islamic region, mosques, Imams, preachers, etc are all registered. You have Mosque police that ensures that Mosques are not turned into platforms for extremism. in Europe you cannot just convert any property into a church.

You have to be registered. Any one that passed through the Kaduna religious travails in the last two decades will never want to see a repeat of the gory tales of killings in the name of religion.

With divisive forces now on the prowl, they need to be checked through the legal system.

Let the Kaduna House of Assembly do the needful, pass this law expeditiously, and let the Kaduna State government make example of any one that dares to breach the law.

I recall a preacher in Kano, who admitted that he was sentenced to three years in prison by a competent court in Kano for preaching without license, and worst he and his colleagues were not allowed to serve prison terms in Kano but in Calabar.

If that could happen in the 1970s why not not now? On this preaching bill, I stand with Governor Nasir. El-Rufa'i, even if the cliche sounded sycophantic.

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