Part of Sheikh Zakzaky’s activities in Birnin Kebbi for the closing ceremony of the Conference organized by the Islamic Movement in Nigeria was interview offered to Kebbi State Radio and Television.
In the interview the Sheikh was asked among other things his assessment of the Sharia that was claimed to be implemented in the states of Northern Nigeria. The Sheikh responded by saying there was no much change achieved considering the fact that the Sharia advocated by the governors was already enshrined in the Nigerian constitution. The politicians who championed the Sharia campaign have done little in changing the status quo. They should have simply embarked on reforms to expand the provisions of the constitution to improve the well being of their people. The politicians have made the people to believe that the real Sharia that encompasses the whole of human life was to be implemented. He likened the scenario to somebody promising to build new cities for his people only to end up patching old dilapidated ones.
On the issue of Boko Haram, when asked to comment, the Sheikh responded that it may be part of the ploy to divert the attention of the public from the illegality of the present government. The Sheikh argued that everyone knows that the government did not win the April, 2011 elections; they manufactured the post election violence and now Boko Haram to divert people’s attention and give legality to the government. Sheikh asked what sort of people are these Boko Haram that nobody has heard of their call and mission. Where are they based? Who are their leaders? What is their medium of communication? Who has ever seen a Boko Haramite? Who will in what way benefit by bombing places of worship and killing innocent lives? It is the government that is ridiculing Islam and portraying our religion and Muslims as terrorists.
Responding to the issue of fuel subsidy removal, the Sheikh described the situation as unfortunate to have a government that is insensitive to the feelings of the people. Nigerian government is not for the interest of the Nigerians, it is rather serving the interest of the West. Sheikh pointed how America as at the fore front to congratulate Nigeria on the removal of the fuel subsidy. When asked that the government is arguing that it will use the money accrued from the subsidy removal to carry out projects that will improve the living standard of the people. Sheikh Zakzaky asked what has the government has done in the past to improve the life of the people. He argued that the government can still source for funds to serve the people without inflicting unnecessary hardship to them.
As for the ongoing mass protest against the fuel subsidy removal, Sheikh suggested that the matter should not be left in the hands of Nigerian Labor Congress (NLC) and Trade union Congress (TUC). It should be a matter that concerns all.
When asked on the Islamic Awakening in the Arab countries, Sheikh observed with regret how the West has been trying to hijack the effort of the people. He cited the example of Egypt and Libya. Because the West has succeeded in these countries, they are now organizing their own revolution in Syria while keeping a blind eye over the atrocities being committed in Yemen and Bahrain. At the end Sheikh Zakzaky warned people to be vigilant over their actions and should not allow their efforts to be stolen only to have change of guards.
By A. D.