Religion is a powerful tool that creates meaning in our lives by articulating values about how we relate to one another. But just as it can unite us, religion can also be a source of division– providing a fertile ground for people with selfish agenda to exploit.
In Nigeria, the true essence of religion is mostly manipulated by misguided elements, who rather than use it as a tool to unite, go for the opposite. A typical example is the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), which agenda of division is no longer in doubt.
On the surface, MURIC pretends to be after the interest of the Muslim population, but a look deeper will reveal a terrible reality about the Prof. Isiaq Akintola led group. And that is politics, which although Prof Isiaq usually try so hard to conceal it, yet, is well written all over its activities.
You don’t have to take my word for it, just take a look into MURIC’s advocacy over the years and you will realize the deliberate exploitation of religion to advance political interest. The clearest reflection is MURIC’s position on the recently unveiled Commissioner-nominees by Governor Ademola Adeleke of Osun state.
Keeping up to his disruptive imagery, Akintola introduced religion colouration to the list of the Commissioner-nominees by mischievously suggesting that Governor Adeleke did it deliberately to marginalized the Muslims. According to him, the governor deceived “Muslims in the state and engaging in spiritual hide and seek”, ridiculously submitting that “Adeleke is a secret agent of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN.”
This misuse of religion to advance political interest is, sadly, a feature common with Akintola. The truth about Akintola’s advocacy, which can no longer be ignored, is that he is determined to ignite a religion crisis in Osun state just because his favourite party failed at the poll.
And he did just start now. Shortly after Governor Adeleke appointed the Secretary to the State Government, the Chief of Staff and the Spokesperson– all of whom are Muslims– this same Akintola tried to provoke the Christian community in the state to action using distorted narratives, which any reasonable mind should not even contemplate.
Most obviously, it goes to show the agenda of Akintola in Osun state. Since Adeleke took office, Akintola has spare no effort in sowing the seeds of division among the populace, flying dangerous narratives that is capable of igniting religion crisis. Akintola’s defining personal and public characteristics is chaos.
What exactly is Akintola goal? The answer is quite obvious except for those who are not too observant. Akintola is an APC agent using religion as a cover to manipulate thoughts into falling for his game. He understands the sentiments easily triggered by an imaginary threat to one’s faith, and cunningly exploiting it even in the face of danger to the society.
This can be easily deduced by the fact that MURIC searchlight is mostly beamed at state’s being governed by a party other than the APC. About the same time that Governor Adeleke released Commissioner-nominees list, Ekiti state did similar thing, but Akintola was blind to whatever goes there since it is not a PDP Governor.
No one who witnessed the devasting damage of religion crisis in places like Kaduna and others, will not be worried at this dangerous tactics of Akintola to drive his political interest. While Akintola is entitled to his political belief, he should at least be responsible enough not to throw a state into crisis in the process of driving support.
Osun is a unique state. Many households in Osun has Muslims and Christians as member of the same family without no issue whatsoever. People like Akintola are toxic, trying to create social instability using disjointed narratives, and so, he must be warned to take his extremist views elsewhere.
Shakirullai Babatunde (Engr Shakbab) writes from Ila Orangun, Osun State.
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