Senator Kabir Abdullahi Barkiya representing Katsina Central Senatorial District has said that activities of Boko Haram are completely opposed to the teachings of Islam.
Senator Kabir was clarifying his earlier remark where he was quoted in the interview as saying that “Boko Haram are not Muslims”.
He has however stated that what he meant was that the Boko Haram are ignorant Muslims whose activities especially in the wanton killing of innocent people is un-Islamic.
The lawmaker reacted to an earlier interview granted to our correspondent, noting that, “I didn’t say they aren’t Muslims. I was trying to say that the activities of the group are not Islamic.
“Some of the activities such as killing people and burning places of worship aren’t Islamic because there is no where in the Qur’an where Allah said innocent people should be killed. However, we cannot say someone is a Kafir (unbeliever) until he denounces the Kalimah (testimony).
The Senator backed up his claims with a narration from the authentic hadith about the story of a man among the children of Israel who killed 99 people.
He said, “the man decided to repent. He met one Imam (scholar) regarding his intention to repent. The man asked the scholar, would God accept my repentance? The scholar replied, No! How can you kill 99 people and expect God to forgive you? The man then killed the scholar, making it 100 people he killed.
“He was remorseful and went to another scholar, whose reply was, ‘who said God cannot forgive you?’ Forgiveness is in God’s hands. If you are truly remorseful, then Allah will pardon you. He then advised him to leave the town for another city where its people are believers.
Senator Barkiya continued, saying, “He died on his way. At the point of his death, his inclination was towards the city of the believers. Both angels of mercy and punishment came arguing about his corpse. The Angel of mercy said the soul belonged to him, because he has sought for forgiveness from his Creator but angel of punishment said, ‘no, he killed 100 people. He died as a sinner.’
“As the debate was about to ensue, Allah sent another Angel as an arbiter to resolve the issue. After listening to both sides, he gave this verdict by measuring the distance. If the spot where he died is closer to the good people, then he belongs to the Angel of mercy, but if it is nearer to the wicked people, he will be given to the Angel of punishment.
“Upon measured the ground. Because the man had just set out, he was still closer to the wicked. But because he was sincere in his repentance, the Lord moved the spot where he lay and brought it to just outside the city of the good people. He was therefore handed over to the Angel of mercy.”
Senator Kabir noted that for someone committing sins, as long as he hasn’t denounced Islam, he is only a sinner who can be forgiven by Allah if he seeks repentance sincerely.
“We cannot call the Boko Haram kufar (unbelievers). They didn’t deny Islam but their activities are contrary to the teachings of Islam. That’s why I said there is no where in the Qur’an where Allah said innocent people should be killed. They are ignorants who were brought up indoctrinated and following a wrong ideology.”
“Therefore, it’s a teamwork for all Nigerians, particularly Muslims, to deplore their activities and teach people the pristine Islam different from what Boko Haram is preaching. We have to put heads together to see how we can preach to them (Boko Haram members) that what they are doing is wrong. We need to also tell others that what Boko Haram is doing is not Islamic. So, this is the only way.
“We have to be collective in this task – I mean we, the true Muslims. A verse in the Holy Qur’an says; “We will not change your condition except you decided to change your own condition by yourselves”. So, that’s what we ought to be doing fundamentally,” he added.
▪︎ On spiritual solution to end insurgency
Senator Barkiya noted that apart from the military action already being waged by the Nigerian Army at the war front, fervent prayers and fasting can also bring an end to the decades of Boko Haram’s terror in Nigeria.
The Senator said that the role of prayers and fasting in overcoming challenges bedevilling the country cannot be ignored.
He said, “While the soldiers are fighting at the war front, it is important for all Nigerians irrespective of their religion including the religious leaders to unite and pray for the country to defeat Boko Haram, bandits and others.”
Quoting from the Qur’an, the Senator stressed that Allah said: “Call upon Me; I will respond to you.” Q.40: 60.
“Don’t forget, the government has done the first thing, which is providing basic equipment to fight Boko Haram, but winning any battle is in the hand of Allah and it requires prayers.
“That’s why I strongly support Governor Zulum who appealed to Nigerians to pray and fast for Borno and other places being threatened by insecurity. I read that a lot of Nigerians, both Muslims and non-Muslims observed it. That is very great. Allah will surely answer the prayers of the oppressed and verily the challenges will be surmounted,” he noted.
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