Over the years, I have learnt not to totally rely on Wikipedia as a source or reference. As a writer and debater on politics and religion, the need to make researches and quote sources is very important. For those who do not know, as detailed as articles on Wikipedia are, the facts are challengeable and subject to correction.

When it was reported that Abba Kyari died, various media outlets published the story. Many but a few got the age wrongly, including me. My attention was called to the error by ace journalist, Sulaiman Aledeh. I wrote an article on Saturday morning where I gave the age as 82 (now corrected).

Late Friday night, the age was not on the Wiki article, then on Saturday morning, it says 82. When Aledeh called my attention, I went to check the same article and the age says 67. I was very sure I saw 82 in the morning. So, I signed in to my Wiki account and checked the edit history. Within 24 hours, the article was edited not less than 30 times.

Many media outlets also fell for this, even Channels. Aledeh.com did a good job with the age as well as Premium Times who published an article to that effect. For a research work, it is better to read and draw facts from the source(s) of a Wiki article.

This is what those who do not know about Islam but put themselves in the position of Scholars need to know. Sheikh Google and Imam Wikipedia should not take the position of scholars and Islamic texts. Likewise, the enemies of Islam who claim to have studied Islam on Wikipedia and anti-Islamic websites need to know this as well. Someone comes to you for a debate, sits in front of the computer with 20 Wiki pages opened then claims he used to be an ex-Islamic scholar.

I remember editing the Hijab article on Wikipedia. In 2018, if you search Hijab on google, the thumbnail from wiki used to be the picture of an Iranian (I think) woman with a rope-like piece of clothing on her head, it is different today. You will see the woman’s picture under the Burqa and Niqab section of the Hijab article. Unfortunately, I was unable to change the erroneous definition of the Hijab which is still there at the time of this writing. It says;

A hijab is a veil worn by some Muslim women in the presence of any male outside of their immediate family, which usually covers the head and chest

A Hijab is to be worn by Muslim women not some and goes beyond covering the head and chest.

Conclusively, articles on Wikipedia should be fact-checked and you cannot claim to have proper knowledge of any religion or people through Wikipedia.

Bashir Lucas Samson Lukman


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