Andy Esiet, Calabar
Former Senate Leader Sen. Victor Ndoma-Egba (SAN) has debunked allegations making rounds that the All Progressives Congress (APC) Muslim Muslim ticket for the 2023 presidential election is an attempt to islamise Nigeria.
Chatting with some newsmen in Calabar late last night on the chances of the APC on the February 25 and March 11 elections, he said given the performance of the party in the past eight years, it is obvious that the APC will sweep the polls and the issue of religion or islamisation of Nigeria is just a political propaganda by opposition parties.
Ndoma-Egba said “I have heard Sheikh Abubakar Gumi saying that Prophet Mohammed who founded Islam never succeeded in Islamising the World and Jesus who founded the Christianity never succeeded in christianizing the World. So if these two people who founded these religion couldn’t, then you can? How do you want to do it?
“If you are persuaded by any religion, please feel free but to say you are going to force me to your own faith, that is not possible. Religion is something of the mind. If you force the body what of my heart?. So the issue of the islamistion of Nigeria cannot work. It is a nightmare and will not work”.
He stated that “in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) you dare not talk anything about religion even though it a Muslim country. Whether Islamic sensitive or Christian sensitive, you will be sent to prison first and then sent back home where you came from. But what have we done with religion here in Nigeria? What have we done.? Europe is Christian but developed. They use Christian principles for their political etiquette and political philosophy.
“They have developed. They are everywhere. What do we do with Christianity in Nigeria, we preach miracles and prosperity. No work, no responsibility. You go and bash your car, you blame the devil and your grandma etc. Here in Nigeria, what does Islam do, Boko Haram, poverty against the principles of Islam which is a religion of knowledge”.
He wondered, “which version of Islam are we practicing here in Nigeria?. Which version of Christianity are we also practicing here that elsewhere, Islam is bringing development, Christianity is bringing development?.
“Our own Islam and Christianity is holding us back. So for me I am not comfortable when people begin to see things from the religious point of view. It is a sign of laziness because all religions are religions of knowledge, of God’s blessings and prosperity. God cannot bless you with poverty, no”.
He pointed out that the issue of Muslim Muslim ticket has been exaggerated after all “our candidate famously has a pastor wife and she’s an active member of the Nigerian Christian community. I think the sin of the APC has been exaggerated because it is not as bad as the sin of the PDP where you have a candidate taking the turn of the South”.
The former Senate Leader sued for a peaceful election saying, “it is my fervent prayer that the elections will be peaceful. God is control. All stakeholders we have a duty to play to ensure we have a smooth transition during and after the general elections. We need a peaceful elections. We are over 209 million Nigerians. God forbid if we were to have a refugee crisis, what will happen to us. So we all have a stake. Go out there and cast your vote and peacefully return to your homes .
“Any politicians who wants to engage you on anything awkward, tell him to bring his children to lead”.