Soyinka wants the imam of the national mosque be fired for blasphemy

Professor Wole Soyinka, a Nobel laureate, has called for the dismissal of Professor Ibrahim Maqari, the Imam of the National Mosque in Abuja, for his comments on the lynching of Deborah Samuel Yakubu, a 200-level student of the Shehu Shagari College of Education in Sokoto, for allegedly blaspheming Prophet Muhammad

In the guise of religion, Soyinka accused the Islamic preacher of directing his followers to take the law into their own hands. On Saturday, he addressed in Abuja for the one-year commemoration of the late former Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Ibrahim Attahiru, and the launch of Niran Adedokun's biography of Attahiru.

The Nobel Laureate condemned religious lynching and demanded that Professor Maqari be removed from office as a "apostate of humanity's credo." "It is no longer adequate for all to proclaim that Islam is this and that, that the Sharia is this and that, that Prophet Mohammed set this and that example and made this and that humanistic proclamation," he continued. All pietistic condemnations must be accompanied by affirmative action."

According to the dramatist, the Islamic preacher has done nothing but encourage his followers to kill anyone who insults Prophet Muhammad. "Professor Maqari, on the other hand, insists, along with a few others, even outspoken serving officers recently, that there is no regret involved in the torture and lynching of a young student on this earth," Soyinka continued. In the name of religion and innovation, Maqari has tacitly instructed his followers to take the law into their own hands. That is the message of a supposedly holy man to a nation engulfed in his repeated incidents of craziness."

Youths have been indoctrinated to aspire to a brutish existence below the lowest common denominator of what is human, according to the Nobel laureate. "Surely, every self-respecting nation should put its defining unbridgeable boundary there," he added.

Aisha El-Rufai, the wife of Kaduna State Governor, also spoke out against killings in the name of Islam, saying Deborah's killers went against Prophet Muhammad's teachings. "Permit me to say that these people are people we should talk about, just like someone who robs and kills someone else, exactly like a pervert Muslim who rapes a three-month-old infant, just like a mad Christian who rapes a six-year-old girl," she said. These individuals are not acting in the name of any religion. They are not for Prophet Muhammad, for whatever reason they want to utilize religion. "Islam condemns what they did, and if the prophet were still alive, he would not have permitted such heinous acts against anyone." I believe it is vital for me to protect him and the religion that these insane individuals defame with their insane acts."

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