Sadistic religious crises across the length and breadth of northern Nigeria present another formidable reason why Nigeria must be restructured urgently.
Over the decades, Nigeria has been enmeshed in several bloody strifes and ironically, the cases always bear the same signature: Islamic extremists attacking either southern Christians or their northern Christian counterparts.
Religious Crises are yet another proof that Nigeria is not a united peaceful prosperous and developed nation.
Recently, the leadership of International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety) authoritatively and researchably confirmed that Igbo Ethnic Nationality in Nigeria had since 1945 till date, lost not less than 3.5 million persons and properties valued at over $50 billion to criminal Hausa-Fulani Muslim citizens and their allies.
According to the report, “out of 3.5 million Igbo citizens lost in Nigeria since 1945 or in the past 72 years, 3 million citizens were killed during the Biafra-Nigeria Civil War, 200,000 others were killed in decades’ long Igbo butcheries since 1945 and 300,000 others died untimely as a result of successive and present central governments’ hash policies against the Igbo People including massacre of their bread winners and legal guardians.”
It is also pertinent to add at this juncture that the greater percentage of the killings was deeply steeped in religious ignorance.
Recently, SaharaReporters reported that Islamic students went on the offensive against Christian employees of a Federal University in Katsina.
According to the report, the “tense atmosphere arose when, just after their Friday prayers, Islamic students at the university mobilized and began protesting against Christian employees at the university.”
The Muslim students also mobilized other Muslims groups from Dutsin-ma town to support their mission of unseating Christians in the university, the report added.
According to a work titled “Religious Crisis in Nigeria: The Genesis”, published on 22 April 2013, “Religious crisis in Nigeria did not start over-night but has its roots in a systematic Islamic expansionist agenda for the nation.
“From a historical perspective, it can easily be recalled that while Islam entered the country from the North, Christianity came in from the South.
“Both religions have similar expansionist goals and that is where the similarity ends.
“While Christianity expands through verbal and moral persuasion, Islam puts its point across with the sword.
“As Christianity moved up to the North, Islam started pushing its way down to the South.
“The two opposing religious beliefs met at the Middle Belt of the country and set in motion a wave of spiritual conflict that culminated in perennial crisis in Plateau State.
“With an irreconcilable opposing beliefs between the Christians and the Muslims, the stage was set for a violent conflict in the Middle Belt as well as in other parts of the North.”
The report also noted that in “Islam… under the religion of Mohammedanism, there is no separation of politics and religion or government and religion. Under Islam, both are the same.”
Little wonder then that “wherever a Muslim holds political power, even in a multi-religious community, his first objective is to use the political power at his disposal as a jihadist tool to spread and support his religion, as well as consciously use the instrument of the state to suppress, persecute and decimate opposing religions until they submit to Islam,” it stated.
The very recent Boko Haram crises in the northern Nigeria speak volumes about the widespread and veracity of religious crises in Nigeria.
Sharia law has also been used to fan the embers of religious crises in northern Nigeria.
According to Wikipedia, religious violence in Nigeria can be traced back to 1953, and in the case of the town of Tafawa Balewa, to 1948 during the Igbo massacre of 1966.
It added that today, religious violence in Nigeria is dominated by the Boko Haram insurgency, which aims to impose Sharia on the northern parts of the country.
The report states: “The 1980s saw an upsurge in violence due to death of Mohammed Marwa (“Maitatsine”).
“In the same decade the erstwhile military ruler of Nigeria, General Ibrahim Babangida enrolled Nigeria in the Organisation of the Islamic Conference.
“This was a move which aggravated religious tensions in the country, particularly among the Christian community.
“In response, some in the Muslim community pointed out that certain other African member states have smaller proportions of Muslims, as well as Nigeria’s diplomatic relations with the Holy See.