Renowned Northern Nigerian Islamic Cleric, Sheikh Gumi Carpets Buhari, Others For Truncating Civil Rule

Renowned Northern Islamic cleric, Sheik Ahmed Abubakar Gumi, has criticised all past military leaders in the country, who had terminated civilian regimes. 

He said such men in today’s politics have no moral justification to complain of rigging in the 2015 general elections.

Apparently, Gumi was referring to the role of the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), retired General Muhammadu Buhari, whose regime, as military Head of State, terminated the Second Republic elected civilian government of Alhaji Shehu Shagari.

Sheik Gumi, who is also a retired Major in the Nigerian Army before stepping into his late father’s shoes as a Muslim scholar and preacher, argued that if the military had not interrupted civil rule in the past, the nation would have been better for it by now. 

He noted that those who brushed aside the nation’s Constitution have turned around to use it under a democratic setting today.

According to Sheik Gumi: “No any military man has moral ground to complain of election rigging in 2015 because if the military had allowed democracy to grow, this country would have developed better than this. 

  “The military keep going into our democracy because of corruption, but if you look back, history is repeating itself because it is the same military that put aside our Constitution that wants to use the same Constitution.”

The cleric made the assertion when members of Kaduna State chapter of Ohanaeze Ndigbo held a consultative meeting with him over fears of violence in the 2015 election. 

He said that most Nigerian leaders had been over-recycled to a point that they should give way to a younger crop of the citizenry.

While admitting that Nigeria was going through difficult times, he however assured that things would be better “because it is better to be patience for four years than to be lamenting for 40 years.” 

  “Nigeria is going through developmental stages. I want to say that Nigeria should bring complete new leaders who had not served this country before because we keep on recycling old leaders who don’t have the interest of the country at heart, but their personal interest.”

Sheik Gumi urged Nigerians not see the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) as opposing religious parties, but purely political parties, which are doing things the way they like, either personal or political. 

“The political awareness of 2011 is different from the awareness of 2015, and by the next 20 years, every Nigerian will be fully aware of his political rights to the extent that nobody can cheat another person on the issue of elections in the country,” he said.

“We should not allow politicians to use religion to divide us; we should be relating together because our security is that if our neighbour is safe, we are also safe.”

In his speech at the occasion, the leader of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Kaduna branch, Mr. Austin Amaechi, acknowledged the personal role of Sheik Gumi in ensuring that there would be peace during and after the 2015 elections.

Amaechi said: “Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Kaduna State chapter, is here to extend appreciation to our respected and honoured Sheik for his interest in ensuring that there is peace in 2015. 

“We are aware of his advice to politicians to play by the rule. We applaud this because politicians, who lose elections, may inspire violence. 

We call on community leaders, religious leaders and, indeed, leaders at all levels, to play the role in educating the youths to shun violence. 

“We want 2015 to be a year of peace, consolidation of democracy and economic prosperity for Nigerians.

SOurce: The Guardian
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