“Be conscious of the fact that people are either your brothers in faith or your equal in humanity.” -Imam Ali (as)
Before the incursion of the Saudi – promoted Wahhabism into Nigeria in the mid 1970s, Nigerian Muslims and Christians lived in peace & harmony with total absence of inter-religious wars & conflicts. There was mutual respect & tolerance among the Muslim & Christian communities of Nigeria. Unfortunately came the deviant teachings of Wahhabism especially in Northern Nigeria & with it comes intolerance, hate-mongering, looking down on others, superiority complex & finally BokoHaram Terrorism.
This Wahhabi contamination of the dominant Sunni Islam found fertile ground in Northern Nigeria. They declared the followers of the Sufi brotherhood that had dominated Northern Nigeria for centuries as “Kafirs (infidels)”, they built their own mosques with Saudi funds so that they will not follow “Kafirs” in prayers & they erected their own madrasa schools where they indoctrinate people on the deviant teachings of Wahhabism. With Saudi petro-dollars, these Wahhabis quickly spread across towns & villages of Northern Nigeria.
Unfortunately this Wahhabi contamination of Sunni Islam greatly affected the harmonious & brotherly relashionship that existed among Nigerian Muslim and Christian communities especially in Northern Nigeria. And this resulted in countless senseless inter-religious conflicts that resulted in the death of thousands of innocent Nigerians on both sides.
Then came the call of the Nigerian Islamic scholar His Eminence Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky that totally rejects the intolerance, hate-mongering, superiority complex & Takfirism (excommunicating Muslims from Islam) of the deviant Wahhabism.
To underline the importance of mutual respect and peaceful coexistence among Muslims and Christians, the Islamic Movement of Nigeria ( IMN ) became the first and only Islamic group in Nigeria that invite Christian religious scholars and leaders to its programs. IMN also attends all programs and activities whenever it was invited by Christian groups in Nigeria.
Such gesture did not get on well with followers of Wahhabism in Northern Nigeria, as they accused Sheikh Zakzaky and IMN of “being one and the same with Christians”. It is important to note that all the murderous terrorist groups like ISIS, AlQaeda, BokoHaram etc that are today killing people in the name of Islam are inspired & are offshoots of Wahhabism. So their hatred against all those who do not subscribe to their deviant teachings should not come as a surprise since these murderous terrorist groups are their production.
Then came the brutal Zaria massacre by the Nigerian Army that killed 1000+ defenseless & unarmed Shia_Muslims in Nigeria. Naturally Wahhabis celebrated & the Despotic Wahhabi King Salman of Saudi Arabia called the Nigerian President Buhari to congratulate him for the massacre & asked for more. Conversely, the overwhelming majority of Nigerian Christians strongly condemned the brutal massacre with a loud voice and only few among them who are contaminated with Zionism celebrated the massacre.
It is part of our Islamic tradition that to whomever kindness is shown, then gratitude is expected. For all the support & solidarity of our Nigerian Christian brothers and sisters in humanity, we say we are grateful. With these your actions you showed us that humanity is one & that we are not enemies of each other. Our enemies are those bloodthirsty extremists who only promote hate, intolerance and terrorism. Both Islam and Christianity teaches love, mercy & compassion, if we hold on to these values our beloved country Nigeria will witness real peace and prosperity.