I write in reply to your article in The Nation newspaper of Monday, April 15, 2019 captioned What kind of elders? in which you made scathing and false allegations against the National Christian Elders Forum (NCEF) with particular focus on General Danjuma and myself. Suffice to say that you have added a new libelous narrative that General Danjuma was the one who led soldiers to Western Region to effect Aguiyi Ironsi’s trajectory to death. This is a false narrative of the events of July 1966. It is dangerous to rely on hearsay evidence of events which took place when you were a boy of about five years.
In 1966, the core North got Christian minorities of that Region to murder Christians of the South in the South/West and North under the guise of one North in one Nigeria. Your action in insulting Christian Elders is no different in that, as a Christian, you have been paid the right prize. You ignored the fact that President Buhari in 1983 committed treason when he overthrew the Shehu Shagari’s government this is in addition to the fact that he was one of the seven colonels who masterminded the overthrow of General Yakubu Gowon in 1975. It was the same coup plotters that retired Chief Justice Elias, a Muslim but was a committed Democrat, in order to Islamize Nigeria by replacing a Federal Republic with a Sultanate. Today, Justice Walter Onnoghen’s removal through stealth jihad of the Executive is the continuation of the jihad that began with the overthrow of General Gowon in 1975
On the allegation that the NCEF is an impostor, one would have thought you would have found out that the Christian Social Movement of Nigeria (CSMN) is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) registered in the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) on September 27, 2001 with Reg. No 14,075. The CSMN which I am presently Chairman of its Board of Trustees, set up the National Christian Elders Forum (NCEF) that was launched in January 15, 2015 by Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor the then CAN President as sub-committee of both the CSMN and CAN to educate Nigerians especially Christians, on the conflict of ideologies of Democracy and Sharia in Nigeria. This conflict, we believe, is the main reason why Nigeria’s development as a country has being stymied even as the purported amalgamation was, only in reality, annexation in practice. The NCEF believes that annexation and Sharia are responsible for Nigeria’s failures, especially the unending insecurity which borders on a jihad, both conventional and stealth.
Our displeasure with Buhari stem from the fact that we all have (including Buhari), six decades of service to our country and some members of the NCEF were his subordinates while Generals Danjuma and Dogonyaro were his superiors. In your article, you wrote “According to Asemota, we ought to wait for the courts before doing that (congratulations). This is hypocrisy. They should have been more subtle if they wanted to hide their love for Atiku and the PDP….” NCEF was in fact opposed to the Muslim/Muslim, Fulani/Fulani candidacy of the two parties, as NCEF regarded the two parties APC and PDP as two branches of one “party” promoted and controlled by one tribe and one religion.
Any educated Nigerian in the present circumstance of the competition between Democracy and Sharia, who does not take sides – and as in the case of NCEF, siding with Democracy, has his education misplaced and is on the same pedestal with Boko Haram meaning Western education is a sacrilege.
Please note that morality and religion are different ideas. Morality involves relationship between humans while religion involves the relationship between human being and God. The differences between the two religions can be appreciated if one understands the teaching of Christianity and Islam on the subject.
Extracted from the Koran’s long text and arranged with the negative emphasized for the sake of comparison: (1) Do NOT set up another god with God; (2) Be good to your parents, look after them with kindness and love; (3) Give to your relatives what is their due; (4) Do NOT be niggardly, nor go extravagant that you may later feel reprehensive and constrained; (5) Do NOT abandon your children out of fear of poverty; (6) Do NOT go near fornication, for it is an immoral and evil way; (7) Do NOT take a life, which God has forbidden, except in just cause; (8) Do NOT touch the property of others, except for bettering it; (9) Do NOT follow that of which you have no knowledge; (10) Do NOT strut about the land with insolence. [Sacred Origins of Profound Things (The Stories Behind the Rites and Rituals of the world’s Religions) pg. 95]
The Christian moral code provides: (1) I am the Lord thy God, thou shalt NOT have strange gods before Me; (2) Thou shalt NOT take the name of the Lord thy God in Vain; (3) Remember to keep holy the Lord’s Day; (4) Honor thy father and thy mother; (5) Thou shalt NOT kill; (6) Thou shalt NOT commit adultery (7) Thou shalt NOT steal (8)Thou shalt NOT bear false witness against thy neighbor; (9)Thou shalt NOT covet thy neighbor’s wife; (10) Thou shalt NOT covet thy neighbor’s goods. [Sacred Origins of Profound Things (The Stories Behind the Rites and Rituals of the world’s Religions) pg. 91] The above represent the similarity of the moral code of Islam and Christianity even though Christianity pre-dates Islam with over 600 years.
As we shall see below, the similarity ends in the source of the three religions – Christianity, Judaism and Islam and dealings between humans. It does not extend to dealings between Christian and Muslim with God. This dealing with God is a completely different matter that has affected our country, Nigeria and Nigerians. In some cases, these differences in our Nigerianess have been transported to other countries of the world. The effect here at home is that Christianity and “Islamic jihad” are constantly in perennial war since “annexation” of 1914.
When it comes to dealing with God, we Christians see God in the other person. This season of Lent reminds us Christians the standard by which we are judges after death. The last judgment as contained in Matthew 25: 31 – 46, Christians must provide for the naked, hungry, thirsty, sick and those in prison. The NCEF is guided by some tenets of democratic ideology that developed from the scriptures, which include:
- A belief in the God-given power of human reason to comprehend truth. While reason does not supersede revelation, it serves as an aid in the search for truth where the Scriptures are silent.
- A belief that man is not a perfect or perfectible being, and that governmental theories must take that fact into account.
- A belief that God has ordained human government to restrain the sinful nature of man.
- A belief that God has established certain physical laws for the operation of the universe, as well as certain moral laws for the governance of mankind.
- A belief that the revealed law and the law of nature include natural, God-given, inalienable human rights which include life, liberty, and property.
- A belief that governments are formed by covenant or compact of the people in order to safeguard human rights.
- A belief that governments have only such powers as are delegated to them by the people in the said covenants or compacts, and that when governments attempt to usurp powers not so delegated, they become illegitimate and are to be resisted.
- A belief that, human nature being what it is, rulers tend to usurp more and more power if given the opportunity.
- Power has a corrupting influence and could be used to oppress others. For these reasons, the authority of leaders should be carefully monitored.
The way our country Nigeria is administered today including the fact that you yourself admitted when you wrote that you “decry the incompetence with which the Buhari government has handled security in the country” thus confirming the sordid state of our country. You continued “these days it is even worse, as though he has no idea the nation is bowing ever so tragically to slaughter and dark forces”, (this, no doubt, is stealth jihad) at play, yet you still preferred Buhari to Akitu. Atiku does not pretend to be a saint, he has not committed treason and has promised to re-structure Nigeria in the spirit of amalgamation not “annexation”. The Islamists in Nigeria including President Buhari in words and action wants us, Christians to endorse the tenets of Sharia listed below. It is also very clear that Buhari is bent on changing Nigeria from a Democracy to a Sharia Sultanate. The so-called anti-corruption crusade is mere Taqiyya. The preference of the NCEF was and still is for the Third Force of a party not Buhari or Atiku two branches of one Islamic party. This fact, we made public before the elections of 2019 with reasons.
You also asked the valid question if he (Danjuma) did not make his career in the military by pitching his tent with those he now sees as northern hegemonies?” Your write-up suggests, in my view that you are trying to make your career as a journalist by pitching your tent with the Fulani Islamist jihadists. The ideological difference between Democracy and Sharia show stone-wall incompatibility, which makes it very easy to appreciate why Nigeria has been in perpetual war “jihad” since amalgamation (annexation to NCEF). The under-listed are tenets of Islam which are incompatible with Democracy.
- Rejection of Human Rights
That humans have no right as all rights belong to Allah and humans obey.
- Apostasy: This defines anyone who, after accepting Faith in Allah, utters Unbelief, except under compulsion. Leaving Islam is the ugliest form of unbelief (kufr) and the worst... When a person who has reached puberty and is sane voluntarily apostatizes from Islam, he deserves to be killed.
- Islamic Supremacy: the belief that Islam is superior to every other culture, faith, government, and society and that it is ordained by Allah to conquer and dominate them: “And whoever desires a religion other than Islam, it shall not be accepted from him, and in the hereafter he shall be one of the losers.”
- Jihad: Jihad is warfare to spread Islam: “Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the Religion of Truth, from among the People of the Book, until they pay the jizya with willing submission and feel themselves subdued; So fight them until there is no more fitna and all submit to the religion of Allah alone.”
- Lying/Taqiyya: It is permissible for a Muslim to lie, especially to non-Muslims, to safeguard himself personally or to protect Islam. Let not the believers take the disbelievers as friends instead of the believers, and whoever does that, will never be helped by Allah in any way, unless you indeed fear a danger from them. And Allah warns you against Himself, and to Allah is the final return.
The combination of the two ideologies in Nigeria since independence has produced a class of Nigeria citizens (Mukharabat) operatives that are neither good Christians nor good Muslims but agents waiting for the right prize to be paid so that they can do the biddings of the Islamists in Nigeria. These Mukharabat are in millions, selected from some retired members of the three arms of government since 1960, the private sector and a good number from failed Christians and Muslims who pretend to prefer good to evil.
Rejection of human rights, apostasy, Islamic supremacy, jihad and Taqiyya explains some of Buhari’s actions. “When empires fall, they tend to stay dead. The same is true of government systems. There are, however, two prominent examples of governing systems re-emerging after they had apparently ceased to exist. One is Democracy a form of government that had some limited success in a small Greek city-state for a couple of hundred years, disappeared, and then was resurrected some two thousand years later. Its re-creators were non-Greeks, living under radically different conditions, for whom democracy was a word handed down in the philosophy books, to be embraced only fitfully and, after some serious re-interpretations. The other is the Islamic state. From the time Prophet Muhammad and his followers withdrew from Mecca to form their own political community until just after World War I (almost exactly thirteen hundred years) Islamic governments ruled states that ranged from fortified towns to transcontinental empires. These states, separated in time, space, and size, were so Islamic that they did not need the adjective to describe themselves. A common constitutional theory, developing and changing over the course of centuries, obtained in all. A Muslim ruler governed according to God’s law, expressed through principles and rules of the Sharia that were expounded by scholars. The ruler’s fulfillment of the duty to command what the law required and ban what it prohibited made his authority lawful and legitimate.” [The Rise and Fall of the Islamic State, Noah Feldman pgs. 1 – 2] Democracy resurrected and today the Western world, black Africa, Asia, Australia, etc even some Islamic countries have embraced it while the only one of the more recent Islamic caliphate of ISIS in Iraq and Syria has since ceased to exist after less than four years. In the circumstance, it is only right that Nigeria should embrace Democracy not an Islamic caliphate and this should put to test in debates and referendum.
With respect to CAN leaders visit to Aso Villa is the question of legitimacy. The NCEF chose the better option – wait until the legitimacy of Buhari’s election has been established by the courts. When Buhari was congratulated in 2015 after the elections by President Jonathan, there was legitimacy for such congratulation. In 2019, the committee that CAN set up was divided as to the credibility and validity of the presidential election for which a majority was of the view that it was not free, fair or legitimate. CAN President and those that accompanied him on the last visit had “logistics” money paid to them, a usual practice at the Villa. Thus CAN congratulations did not come from the heart but was influenced by the “thirty pieces of silver” syndrome. Like what obtains in the conflict between Democracy and Sharia, some Christian leaders, intellectuals, etc depended on the right prize to determine which side to support whether Democracy or Sharia, even though they know that Democracy is the secularized residue of Church doctrine of the people of God. And they call themselves Christians.
It is necessary to say that Islamism not Islam is unable to tolerate changes from the all-powerful Executive, sultan, emir, a military dictator, etc. The Executive, Legislature and the Judiciary constitute the three in one which is tied up with the trinity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Muslim countries declare affinity with Democracy by trying democracy of one strong man today’s leaders of Egypt, Algeria, Sudan and Buhari of Nigeria, this is a misnomer. In Nigeria, President Buhari has applied most of the Sharia tenets explained above which are in conflict with democracy and the rule of law and the NCEF regard another term with him as president as a calamity in waiting. In his first term as Chief Executive, he refused to obey court orders. The Executive, of which he is the head, attacked the hallowed chambers of the Senate, made off with the mace and as the last straw removed the Chief Justice of Nigeria in a stealth jihad. We pray that this calamity will pass Nigeria by.
There is a saying that what an old man sees sitting down, a young person atop a tree may not. It is in the interest of young people indeed, the nation at large, to listen to elders especially in a country where the influence of the Legislative and Judicial arms have failed in their attempts to reduce the power of Buhari’s Executive. He has refused to develop a commitment to obeying legal and constitutional due process, judgments and is in the habit of attacking the institutions and their leadership.
How I wish that in your article, you demonstrated a dynamic perception of the future, like the youth in other parts of Africa – Sudan, Algeria, etc, provide a policy for the course of event rather than as a “hatchet-man”, some would say, for politicians as exhibited in your article, especially your attack on General Danjuma and myself who are in our 80s. You need to help modern Nigeria to prepare for the (digital) future on the basis of your education. The activities of Boko Haram in Nigeria are intended to return Nigeria to pre-1914 days and some educated Nigerians seem to be trapped in self-adulation than the common good. We must learn from history otherwise history will repeat itself.
I hope that you will give the same publicity to this reply as you gave to your back-page article of Monday, April 15, 2019 in the interest of fairness in the dissemination of knowledge and information especially the true meaning of “annexation” and jihad.
- Wherein all Northern policies are made to apply to the South, whether appropriate of not;
- Where the capital city was moved to the North planned in 1914 but executed after 1960 independence
- A unitary constitution in a Federal Republic of over 370 ethnic nationalities;
- Where proceeds from oil and gas from the South is shared by all Nigerians while gold and other precious minerals from the North belong to the North alone to complete annexation of the South to the North.
While wishing you a blessed Easter, I pray that you may be truly wise with the right understanding of issues through Christ our Lord. Amen
God bless Nigeria
Elder Solomon Asemota, SAN
National Christian Elders Forum (NCEF)