Concerned Muslim Professionals, CMP, an Islamic group, yesterday, called on the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III, to engage members of Boko Haram Islamic sect in discussions.
CMP, while expressing concern over the activities of the sect, said the insurgency persisted because of the failure of Muslim leadership to intervene.
According to the group, several members of the sect would have laid down their arms and many wouldn’t have joined the erroneous sect, if the Muslim leadership in Nigeria had engaged the sect for discussions.
The President of the organisation, Alhaji Mohammed Saidu, in a letter, entitled “Echoing the message of General Yakubu Gowon (rtd): A call for action on Islamic leadership of Northern Nigeria,” said there had been no visible or invisible effort by the Muslim leadership to convene such engagements at even a single location, let alone covering the whole troubled region.
“That could be why demand for action on the leadership is repeatedly made by well meaning citizens,” the group noted.
The group in the letter obtained by journalists, yesterday, in Abuja, regretted that the activities of the sect had become a great embarrassment to the Islamic faith.
The CMP said: “If the family of billionaire, Umar Mutallab, could have a terrorist in its midst, then such a disease could be everywhere; it can only take the effort of the Sultan and the other Muslim leaders to mobilise compliance by parents and relatives, which is part of the actions being demanded by well-meaning Nigerians.
“The biggest task before our Muslim and Islamic leaders in the North is to reconcile the warring communities of Muslims and Christians through forgiveness, healing and genuine social integration and coexistence; similar to the one referred to by General Gowon on the Muslims of the South-West geopolitical zone. The other task is to make Boko Haram come out of hiding, denounce terrorism and embrace government’s overtures.
“A failure on the part of the Muslim leadership (under His Eminence the Sultan) to discharge these responsibilities/actions to the later will render it of questionable ability, doubtful recognition, decimal loyalty or an outright dismissal as a mere smoke-screen. As obedient and loyalists to His Eminence the Sultan, our hearts bleed on these realities.”