Appoint Muslim ministers from south west - MURIC tells Buhari

Appoint Muslim ministers from south west - MURIC tells Buhari

- The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) wants Islamic faithful from the south west to have a fair share of Buhari's cabinet

- MURIC says despite having a higher number of Muslims in the south west, the members of the religion in the zone have not enjoyed such opportunity

- The group says Muslims from the zone suffered more during the government of Goodluck Jonathan

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) on Friday, March 22, appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to consider appointing Islamic faithful from the south west as ministers.

MURIC said it wants Muslims from the south western part of Nigeria to be given a fair place in the coming cabinet of the president.

In a statement made available to Legit.ng by Professor Ishaq Akintola, its director, the group argued that despite the fact that Muslims are in the majority in the south west, they have always been shortchanged politically.

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“We received the worst treatment under former President Goodluck Jonathan. He appointed six ministers from the sub-region but, to our dismay, all of them were Christians. We complained severally about this gross injustice but he ignored us for three good years (2011 to 2014).

“A delegation of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) led by the sultan of Sokoto met him in Aso Rock and presented this lopsidedness among other grudges. This was on Wednesday 26th March, 2014. To our surprise, Jonathan retorted by asking us why the northern states have not been sponsoring Christians in the north on pilgrimage.

“That was the kind of leader Jonathan was. We complained to him about the marginalisation of a Muslim majority in the south west and he challenged us with the issue of Christian minorities in the north.

“That was how he exposed himself as a president whose interest lay in waging a crusade against Muslims. He reluctantly appointed two Muslims some months later. Wailers accusing President Buhari of lopsided appointments may take this as food for thought.

“MURIC is neither being selfish nor sentimental. Natural justice demands equitable representation if we are all part of the Nigerian project. By the time newly elected governors are sworn in on May 29, 2019, the south west will be having five Christian governors and only one Muslim governor. This leaves Muslims at a disadvantage in a sub-region where they are the majority.

“Unfortunately, the situation was not redressed by the current administration. Of the six ministers appointed by Buhari, only two (Babatunde Raji Fashola and Adebayo Shittu) are Muslims. The remaining four are Christians.

“The only difference is that Buhari was not pressurized by the Muslims before he gave them two ministers. Neither were all his ministers from the area Christians like Jonathan did. Buhari gave the Muslims two slots and gave Christians four. Jonathan gave the Christians six and left the Muslims to whistle for their dinner.”

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MURIC added further: “We are therefore demanding Muslim ministers in all the states where the governors are Christians (Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Ondo and Ekiti). This request should be considered against the backdrop of the gross marginalisation which Yoruba Muslims have faced in the past.

“As we take a break, we appeal to the presidency to consider the need to urgently address the injustice done to Muslims in the South West where they are the majority. They have always been politically marginalized despite having qualified personnel.

“Unfortunately Buhari’s regime has also inadvertently shortchanged them. In the name of justice, fairness and equity, therefore, we demand Muslim ministers in the five south west states where the governors will be Christians come May 29, 2019.”

Legit.ng earlier reported that Alhaji Ishaq Hadejia, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Jigawa state, recently advised President Muhammadu Buhari to avoid re-appointing ministers that did not perform credibly in office.

Hadejia said this in Dutse, the capital of Jigawa state on Thursday, February 28, while speaking on the re-election of President Buhari.

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