“THIS IS NIGERIA” AND THE HYPOCRISY OF MUSLIM APOLOGISTS By Rasheed Abubakar
It has come to my notice that some overzealous Muslim youths are ignorantly castigating the respected Professor Lakin Akintola over his timely, powerful and already viral press release, where he gave Falz The Bahd Guy a 7-day ultimatum to pull down his “This is Nigeria” video or face legal action.
I ask, what is wrong in what the revered Muslim rights activist has said? After all, he didn’t call for violence or war, has he? As a law abiding citizen, he has only threatened legal action against an action that is perceived as an insult to Islam. How else would you describe female choreographers dancing shaku-shaku in the Hijab, if not an insult and provocation, irrespective of whether it was intentional or not?
Recall how all of us lambasted the secondary school girls in Ghana who were seen dancing “One Corner” in the Hijab? Have we all forgotten so soon, how many of us condemned some girls in Hijab singing and dancing to Davido’s IF recently? I read many of such negative comments on the ABIYAMO Facebook page. Why the sudden change now? Why do some of us see nothing wrong in Falz’s choreographers dancing shaku-shaku in the Hijab? This is hypocrisy of the highest order, and those who have faulted Prof Lakin Akintola’s press release must seek forgiveness from him, then seek Allah’s forgiveness.
Can Falz be sued?
Rather than asking how it would be possible to sue the artiste for the shaku-shaku video in case he fails to apologise, Falz’s apologists among Muslims have called out the MURIC Director. They said, among others, that the suggestion of legal action is a joke taken too far. SUBHANALLAH!
Let me shock the doubting Thomases among the Muslims. Falz can be sued for insult to a religion, under Section 124/126 of the Lagos Criminal Code, if there is incontrovertible proof that his female dancers’ portrayal of the Hijab in the video debases its sanctity, and there is. According to the law, offenders are liable to imprisonment for two years or a fine of N50, 000. (See the screenshot image No 1 for details).
This same law, meant to promote an orderly society and religious tolerance, was applied recently in the case of a popular Lagos pastor who was arrested by the police and charged to court for propagating “hate speech”. (Check image 2).
You don’t provoke or insult other people’s religions, even if it’s done mistakenly, because ignorance of the law is not an excuse.
By the way, have the Muslim Falz apologists listened to him on why he featured those shaku-shaku Hijab-wearing girls? Go and read his response in my last column. You would know that it is not “a mistake”, as it is being branded. Assuming it was, the actor would have voluntarily apologized and moved on. That is what the Nigerian Muslims demand from him.
Also, it is important to state here that Falz, like other erring musicians, didn’t submit the controversial video to the National Film And Video Censors Board for censorship and rating before releasing it to the public. This alone is an offence and the artiste, a law graduate who should be conversant with the law but decided to flout it, can be brought to book if the agency decides to investigate the case.
Will Falz be sued?
Will Falz be sued? Maybe yes, maybe not. The success of this peaceful campaign embarked upon by MURIC and our dear sister, Barrister Nyma Akashat-Zibiri of YourView on TVC, who recently launched #remakethisisnigeriavideo, will be determined by the readiness of the Nigerian Muslims themselves. The truth however is, the disunity among the Nigerian Muslims is a reflection of the Nigerian society itself. Partisanship is deeply rooted in our system, a major reason why Nigerian Muslims remain divided and continue to suffer humiliation in the hands of their enemies, the enemies of their religion.
“And do not be like the ones who became divided and differed after the clear proofs had come to them. And those will have a great punishment.” Qur’an 3: 105
As if that wasn’t enough, my attention was also drawn to a pseudo-rejoinder written by a faceless group which calls itself “Muslims Against Terrorists”, purportedly to tackle MURIC.
Shame on you all.
A quick Google search did not provide any information about the group. Pathetically, the so-called rejoinder was not signed. It had no stated Director or Head and I doubt if any respected media platform would publish such as a news item. This group doesn’t exist. One ignoramus who knows nothing about Islam put the garbage together. If you doubt me, show me the group’s website and its previous releases on national issues as affects the Nigerian Muslims.
Nigerian Muslims need to unite and support MURIC to fight this bloodless battle to a logical conclusion. If we succeed, it will prevent future misrepresentation and negative portrayal of Islamic symbols, all in the name of works of art. It will also serve as a deterrent to the so-called Muslim singers who are also fond of these stereotypes in their filthy songs.
“They want to extinguish the light of Allah with their mouths, but Allah will perfect His light, although the disbelievers dislike it.” Qur’an 61: 8
– Rasheed Abubakar is a journalist and the author of “Hijab and the Nigerian Press”. Email: email@example.com | Twitter: @rawshield123
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