Islamic scholars under the aegis of Nigeria Council of Ulamas on Thursday appealed to Kano State Governor, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje, to urgently lift the ban placed on a popular cleric in the state, Sheikh Abduljabbar Nasiru Kabara and open his mosque.
The appeal was made by the Acting National Chairman of the council, Sheikh Dan’azumi Tafawa Balewa, while addressing journalists in his residence in Bauchi.
Sheikh Tafawa Balewa, who doubles as the leader of Tijjaniya sect, said the appeal became imperative considering the fact that the banned cleric had the right to freedom of religion as guaranteed by the constitution, adding that Governor Ganduje should allow Sheikh Kabara go about his normal activities in the overall interest of justice and fairness.
“This fundamental right provided by the Nigerian constitution is in total agreement with the injunction of the Holy Qur’an in which God says ‘No compulsion in religion,” he said.
Sheihk Tafawa Balewa informed that the council, which was established in 1980 deemed it necessary to intervene because it embraces all sects and various conflicting Islamic organizations with the aim of creating unity through different opinions.
“We have respect for conflicting opinions and we stand to promote dialogue and understanding amongst all Muslims conflicting organizations,” he declared.
According to him, the Kabara case was a source of concern to all stakeholders who felt that the dialogue earlier scheduled by the governor between the controversial cleric and other clerics was a good step in the right direction before it was stopped by a court.
He submitted that it would be fair to allow Kabara to freely express himself just as those against him were being allowed to enjoy their rights and privileges of saying their perspectives and propagating their teachings and even verbally attacking him.
Tafawa Balewa then called on Governor Ganduje to, as the leader of all in Kano State, allow a level playing ground for all his subjects as well as be just to all.
“We humbly appeal to the learned governor and experienced politician, Ganduje whom we respect and cherish to peruse and learn to adopt the application of the Qur’anic injunctions in which Allah ordered him as a leader to do justice and provide level playing ground to all his subjects.”