Chief Imam Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu
Concerned Ghanaian Muslims yesterday joined the global campaign against the abduction of over 200 girls by the Boko Haram terrorists in a peaceful march from the Obra Spot to the Abossey Central Mosque in Accra.
At the termination point, they presented a petition to Sheikh Yunus Osman Mohammed, who received the document on behalf of the National Chief Imam Sheikh Osman Nuhu Sharubutu.
One of the highlights of the march was a demand by the demonstrators that a special prayer for the release of the abducted girls be held on 23 rd May 2014.
A demonstrator told DAILY GUIDE at the end of the march that ‘by this gesture, we have effectively joined the worldwide ‘Bring Back Our Girls’ campaign. The silence on our part has been deafening but late than never.’
The concerned Muslims demanded that a clear distinction be made through the Chief Imam between minority terrorist groups and peace-loving Muslims in Ghana and around the world.
They joined other faithful in dissociating themselves from the terrorists.
They added ‘we refuse to allow Islam to be hijacked by minority terrorist groups and our contribution to this global effort must be clear.’
They condemned Boko Haram and other terrorist groups that use Islam for atrocious activities and denounced the position of terrorists who describe formal education as unislamic.
They pointed out that the quest for knowledge is clearly spelt out in the Islamic scriptures about how Muslims must venture to as far away as China to seek knowledge.
The demonstrators, made up of Muslims from diverse backgrounds, including the membership of the Ghana Muslim Students Association and others, appealed to Nigerian Muslim clerics ‘to unequivocally and continuously condemn these un-Islamic actions.’
Boko Haram, the demonstrators stated in the petition, started their insurgency in 2009 and have since ‘killed thousands of Christians and Muslims through bombings, assassinations and now abductions have been added to their Modus operandi all in the name of Islam.’
Continuing, they stated, ‘We have to act now to make a stance against Boko Haram and to show solidarity with the #Bring Back Our Girls campaign. Ghanaian Muslims cannot be silent, we need to stand up and be counted. The word Muslim and Islam have become synonymous with terrorism, violence, backwardness and many other things that are negative. We cannot allow this to continue, true Muslims believe in peace and are tolerant of other beliefs and are not against education.’
The Prophet Mohammed (PBUH), they explained ‘praised the women of Madinah for their pursuit of knowledge: ‘How splendid were the women of the Ansar; shame did not prevent them from becoming learned in the faith.”
According to them, the Quran further states that ‘… and you will find the nearest in love to the believers [Muslims] those who say: ‘We are Christians.’ That is because amongst them are priests and monks, and they are not proud.’
By A.R. Gomda
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