The Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA, yesterday asked the Federal Government to conduct a full-scale religious census of the entire workforce of its Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDAs, to ascertain the states of origin and religious affiliations of the country’s workforce.
The call came against the backdrop of recent outcry by Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, that the shortlisting of more Muslims as Justices of the Court of Appeal was an attempt to Islamise the judiciary. The apex Islamic body said one billion lies by CAN, unleashed on Muslims, would not extinguish the light of Islam in the country. NSCIA also noted that Christianity preaches love, honesty, sincerity, tolerance, good neighbourliness and kindness, among other virtues, and, therefore, urged CAN to desist from blackmail and bigotry.
The Council, in a statement co-signed by Prof. Salisu Shehu and Arc. Haruna Zuberu Usman-Ugwu, its Deputy Secretary-General and Ag. Director of Administration, lambasted CAN, saying Muslims would no longer tolerate any bigoted propaganda whenever a Muslim was at the helm of affairs in the country. The NSCIA said CAN kept mum when Christians dominated the political appointments by past governments, but was swift to claim religious marginalisation when the tides favoured the Muslims.
It stated: “The attention of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) has been drawn to the insinuations and vituperations that trailed the shortlisting of 20 Justices-designate by the Federal Judicial Service Commission, FJSC. “It would be noted that except it is compelled to do so, the Council has often resisted joining issues with the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) as a matter of principle.
“However, NSCIA would not allow the serial falsehood of CAN and its propensity for character assassination of people on the basis of their religious identity to stand because truth is irrefragable.
“The unassailable truth is that Justices of the Court of Appeal (JCAs) are 70 but the North with 19 states has 34, while the South with 17 states has 36. The cacophony of Christian marginalisation that constitutes the singsong of CAN is a blatant lie, a deliberate distortion and a devilish strategy of shedding crocodile tears or crying while flogging Muslims with barefaced oppression and systemic repression in Nigeria.