By Ibrahim Usman
Whether commissioned, out of deep-rooted hatred for Shi’ism, or her name was appended (without her consent), one Sumayya I. Usman decided to display full ignorance on human relations and journalism ethics (which I am sure she has a grasp of).
In the Letters Page of the Daily Trust newspaper dated, November 24, 2014, she complained that, ”the paper is trying to champion the cause of Shi’ism in Nigeria through its columnists Hajia Bilkisu and Adamu Adamu? These columnists, particularly Hajia Bilkisu, are just using their columns to propagate their new-found ideology”.
Beyond this write-up, I am sure the writer or the sponsor fully know Hajiya Bilkisu (mni) and Adamu Adamu as journalists of repute who never gave in to sectional or regional sentiment, but to advance the cause of true journalism and it stands for.
For the writer to also claim that Daily Trust is representing the North is very myopic and short-sightedness. The North is an entity that harbours diverse shade of opinion and creed, but chiefly Islam. For a paper to strictly embrace a particular ideology or creed as its main pre-occupation and be unfriendly to another, is a complete deviation from ethics of journalism. I am sure this is not what Daily Trust is out to promote.
The writer should know that, Shi’ism is as old as human blood in human veins. The fact that she doesn’t know it does not make it “new-found”. If at all it is new found, the world would be eager to know what it entails. And this is journalism. It is clear that the writer, unlike others who have advanced intellectual arguments against the Shi’a creed in the Daily Trust, Sumayyah’s myopic view becomes crystal clear- get rid of Shi’a remembrance on pages of newspapers!
The writer is displaying the same attitude to that of Israel, when the Israeli ambassador to Nigeria, Moshe Ram accused the Daily Trust, Hajiya Bilkisu Yusuf (mni), Adamu Adamu and Aisha Yusuf of being “unfriendly” to Israel (Daily Trust, July 4, 2008). Their sin? They have written stories on Israeli atrocities on Palestinians 60 years on; Hajiya Bilkisu Yusuf (mni) attended a seminar on “Israel @ 60” in which Sheikh Ibraheem Zakzaky spoke and she wrote about it!
The writer perception portends danger to the society and Daily Trust. She wants the paper to honour and propagate the exclusive view of a few, and set Muslims along imaginary lines.
I see Sumayya and Israel two of a kind, who do not want the truth be told.
“Those who inflame discord between Shi’a and Sunnah are neither Shi’a nor Sunnah”. Late Ayatullah Imam Ruhullah Khomaini was right, I cannot place Sumayya.