A don and management consultant, Professor David Iornem, has made an appeal to the Federal Government, as well as some state governments in the North, to be very careful on how they are handling the issue of shiite to avoid plunging the North into another insurgency.
Professor Iornem made this appeal while speaking in Kaduna recently.
He also pointed out that the on-going crisis between the government and the movement must come to an end, making emphasis that the political, religious and community leaders must be determined to bring the crisis to a lasting end.
According to him, it is unfortunate that we have deteriorated to the present level, but if our leaders, political leaders, religious leaders, community leaders are determined, we can pull ourselves out of this crisis.
“I had never thought that one day in Nigeria, one group would go after another group, attacking with sticks and killing at will and nothing happens to them. That is to show that Nigeria is fast turning into a lawless place. This is occurring right in front of us.
“If you can remember all the things that brought the reign of Boko Haram, it was impunity of those that were supposed to uphold the law. Some people who were suspected to have done wrong were arrested, everybody was aware that they were arrested, they showed them to the public. But the leader was killed a few days later.
“We now have a situation that keeps coming back, but it seems like we have forgotten so soon, because there is a case whereby the Shiite group of Muslims, who are being condemned of doing things wrongly, are being killed, and I am not absolving them, but normally, if somebody or a group of persons has done something wrong, the state has a recognised way of responding. You can presume the people innocent and try them in a competent law court. You can engage with the people to make sure they do the right thing. I don’t see that being done.
“I see a constituted government proscribing and outlawing a group, saying that such a group is illegal is not recognized, and people exploiting that to go after the members of that group is not the solution.
“I really want to make an appeal to the Governor of Kaduna State to void the law banning the Shiite group. I also want to make an appeal to other concerned authorities that they should deal with the group in a respectful and meaningful manner so as to avoid what brought about the rise of Boko Haram.”