We will file litigation against hateful remarks – Amir
The Muslim Congress (TMC) has distanced itself from the various political alignments of its members, saying that as a foremost Islamic organisation in Nigeria, its interest in politics is solely for Islam, the Muslim Ummah and humanity.
The group observed, however, that its members belong to most major political parties in Nigeria, united on the mission to promote good governance, political participation, constitutionalism and moral health of the society.
In a press statement made available to Muslim News on Wednesday and jointly signed by the Amir (President), Alhaji AbdulWasi’i Taiwo Bangbala, and Secretary-General of the Society, Alhaji Hassan Taiwo Adesina, the Organisation added that it will not hesitate to take legal actions against those maligning its good name over the political decision of its members.
The statement titled: “TMC: Our Stand on Political Participation, Rule of Law and Lingering ASUU Strike”, read; “The Muslim Congress (TMC), an organisation deeply immersed in national integration, good governance and responsible citizenship, is compelled to lend her voice to trending events in the Nigeria political space.
“As an organisation with members in most major political parties, but united on the mission to promote good governance, political participation, constitutionalism and moral health of the society, we feel duty-bound to sound a note of warning to people employing unconstitutional and extra-legal measures as options in the build-up to the 2023 general elections.”
There have been negative remarks and unsubstantiated allegations from some individuals on social media, alleging that the Society has endorsed the candidacy of a non-Muslim presidential aspirant due to its members’ political alignments.
However, Alhaji Bangbala explained that the TMC as an organisation does not have any alliance with any political party or individual in the pursuit of their political agenda.
He said, “We would like to reiterate the fact that our organisation is like a father to all, with its members in all major political parties. Any member of the TMC seen fraternising with a political party or individual politician in fostering the interest of such is doing so in their own interests and conviction. It has nothing to do with our organisation.
“All those who have maligned or trying to link the name of the organisation to political interests of any individual are, therefore, doing so at the risk of litigation and our lawyers have been appropriately briefed for necessary actions.”
Speaking further, Alhaji Bangbala added that in the light of this development, “We are stating clearly that the interest of the organisation is that of Islam, the Muslim Ummah and humanity. We will continue to encourage and guide our members appropriately on the best ways to discharge their political and electoral duties to seek the pleasure of their Creator while working to achieve cohesion of the Muslim Ummah.”
‘Lack of respect for rule of law’
The Muslim Congress, founded in 1994 to assist Muslims in return to the position of honour and pristine Islam, also frowns at the lack of respect for the rule of law and incessant abuse of Muslim women fundamental rights in Nigeria.
Alhaji Bangbala, in the statement, stated, “We take grave exception to the gradual slide of the country towards constitutional anarchy and lack of respect for the rule of law. As victims of lack of respect for constitutionalism, our Muslim women are being daily denied their rights to use the Hijab. These constitutionally guaranteed rights of Muslim women are flagrantly abused and violated with impunity and no one feels concerned about it.
“We would, therefore, like to appeal to all political actors, especially elected officials and political appointees, to follow the path of honour by respecting the constitution and legal frameworks guiding our social interactions, political participation and electoral aspirations of all Nigerians irrespective of their religious and regional affiliations.”
‘Calls for urgent solution to end ASUU strike’
The Muslim Congress also used the opportunity to appeal to the political elites to as a matter of urgency find a way to resolve the lingering Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) strike, without delay.
Recall that ASUU said on Monday, May 9, that it would embark on an indefinite strike to press home its members’ demands after the expiration of its eight-week nationwide warning strike, which began on February 14.
Alhaji Bangbala noted that it is quite unfortunate that the students and lecturers have been caught in the vortex of a brewing political storm, adding, “What started as a one-month warning strike has morphed into an indefinite strike whilst the cavalier attitude of the authorities to the long-drawn-out industrial action by university lecturers make further evident that nothing matters to the political actors than scheming for positioning in the next political dispensation.
“While not unaware of the government’s other contending demands amidst lean resources, the failure of the authorities to demonstrate commitment to honouring the agreement reached with ASUU in 2009 will always put the government in bad optics. It is disquieting that, in the face of the complete shutdown of universities and the attendant crippling of academic activities in tertiary institutions across the country, some of the dramatis personae who are at the centre of the impasse between FG and ASUU are rather engrossed with political preservation.
“We, therefore, call on public-spirited citizens to rise and be the voice of reason to prevail on the authorities to finally put to bed this national embarrassment of gargantuan proportions. The authorities must come up with the right policies to devise alternative sources of funding for the varsities. This is essential to resolve the perpetual financial crisis and also to attract quality academic and non-academic staff capable of producing quality graduates that can compete with their counterparts around the world,” he said.
The Society, therefore, enjoined Nigerians to fear Allah as the country approaches the time of great transition.
“We pray that He inspires and guides us with the sense of discernment to choose the best among us as our new set of leaders to pilot the affairs of this great country. By the same token, we urge that efforts should not be spared in strictly following constitutional and legal provisions in the conduct of political activities as we take to the polls in the imminent 2023 general elections,” he added.
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