Reasons for The Shi’ite vs Sunni clash in Nigeria.
This post is for only those who cherish HISTORY, and also want to understand how things actually work. The post may be long, but it will do you lots of good, if you read to the end.
“Of all the 19 million Almajiris in Northern Nigeria, non is a fulani. They are all Hausas in majority, coupled with other ethnic groups”.
“The fulanis marry less wives, have less children, train them all in good schools, while encouraging the Hausas to marry many, bear many kids for voting and violence”
The Shia movement in Nigeria, is far from what meets the public eye, its a movement of freedom, emancipation, and recovery of a hitherto lost identity. You are very much mistaken, if you believe what the Sunni led government of Nigeria tells you about the movement. Stay with me, and know why!
Of all the subdued ethnic nationalities in Nigeria, by the Fulanis, the worst hit, are the Hausas. These folk have lost almost everything including their pants, oh yeah including their pants. Lol.
Among some few Hausa elites that understood how his people were weakened and made handicapped by the fulanis, was Aminu Kano, he tried but was unable to withstand Ahmadu Bello (A Fulani) who had support from Britain and other Northerners, including his fellow Hausas. He was frustrated, and struggled till death, and the Hausas continued in slavery. After so many years, El Zaksaky came, but with a religious dimension.
Before i continue, let me first of all establish how the Sunni (sect of the Muslim/Fulani ruling class in Nigeria) and Shia (Sect of El Zakzaky/mainly Hausas) fracas all started. Buckle your seatbelts please, the journey is rough.
You see, Shia (Shi’ite) Islam, is one of the two main branches of Islam. This part of Islam holds that Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Onto Him) designated Ali Ibn Ali Talib as his legitimate successor. Shiites point to the sermon of the Holy Prophet at Johfah, near Rabigh in Hejaz, Saudi Arabia, shortly before his death in 632 CE, where the Prophet made the famous declaration “to whomsoever I am Mawla, Ali is also their Mawla” as the bases of their claim. The entire drama is collectively referred to as the “Event of Ghadir Khumm”.
Shiites believes that this divine mandate was scuttled as a result of the incident of Saqifah.
History holds that while Ali Ibn Abi Talib (the Proposed Successor) was attending to details as regards the Prophet’s funeral, some of Prophet Muhammad’s companions on noticing that there were no member of the Prophet’s family around, pledged allegiance to Abu Bakr as Caliph. This event was reported to have taken place at Saqifah. That immediate act, by them, automatically gave birth to the Sunni Muslim.
The question of who is the rightful Caliph after the Prophet, have evidently divided the Muslim faith not just across religious lines but equally across political lines. While the Sunni politically lean towards Saudi Arabia, the Shiite on the other hand, leans towards Iran.
Theologically, Shia beliefs and rituals slightly differ from that of the Sunni. While all Muslims pray five times a day, Shiites according to Wikipedia, believe that “one has the option of combining Dhuhr with Asr and Maghrib with Isha, as there are three distinct times mentioned in the Holy Quran” Sunni on the other hand, only give room for such combination under certain circumstances. In other words, the stopping of Shia protesters in Nigeria tody, is because of the problem that has been right from the day prophet Mohammed died, and nothing more. Hope you are all following.
The Sokoto Jihadi conquest of 1804 was carried out with the swords of the SUNNI. Mallam Usman Dan Fodio and his gang of Holy Bandits in proclaiming Hausaland for his Fulani tribemen, had done so in the name of Allah, through his messenger Prophet Muhammad, as upheld by Sunnism. After the Jihad, they placed all Fulanis (Sunnis) as Emirs to rule over the Hausas, and they have been trying to sustain it at all cost.
Late Malam Aminu kano (An Hausa), from pre-independence, the first Republic, etc. was all out to challenge the British colonial rule, the fulani Emirs, and was strongly against feudalism. Aminu Kanu challenged the exclusion of women in politics, a thing the fulanis hated. He loved the poor and the downtrodden, those they called “Talakawas” more, he fought for their equality, and thought them how to say no. He was seriously hated by the British and the fulanis. Same ill system, that Kano fought, and died for, is what El Zakzaky is doing today, but towing or lets say starting from a Religious Angle.
Zakzaky was influenced by the Iranian Revolution of 1979, and strongly believes that establishing a new way of worship, can wake people up from reality, and empower the poor reawakening a new Northern Nigeria. This strongly held belief is exactly what puts him at odds with the Sokoto Fulani Cabals. It was much later that the movement started, before then, we never had such movement in Nigeria.
Sokoto fears that Northern Nigeria may soon likely witness her own version of the “War of Roses” should the movement be allowed to grow sufficiently enough to present the choice of an option to the very same masses she had for many years kept under her suppressive grip through the very efficient combo of poverty and illiteracy. This will expose the mirage of a United North and consequently take away power and influence from the “Seat of the Caliphate”.
It is not mere coincidental that the very first state in the whole of the federation that was first to launch a holistic persecution on the Shiites is Sokoto State back in 2007, when the then governor Attahiru Bafarawa ordered the demolition of the Shia Islamic Center in the state. For the records, it was under Attahiru Bafarawa that the Sharia Legal System was introduced to Sokoto State. This Ex-governor being such a radical character had insisted that Sharia States should ignore completely the statement of the then Nigeria Justice Minister who had earlier declared Sharia to be unconstitutional. Islamic education was given utmost priority in primary and secondary school during his time.
The fulanis will do everything possible to see that the Shia ideology doesn’t grow and get out of hands, because if it does, the people will start asking questions and send them back to Guinea. Already, this Shi’it guys don’t take orders from the Sultan, neither do they subscribe to any Emir. From the moment Sharia was introduced Zakzaky was strongly against it.
From governors, ministers, local government chairmen, etc. are mostly Sunni Muslims, the fulanis don’t want to leave a place for Shia, because they don’t want an uprise. Since they have traditionally placed themselves as the Sultan and Emirs to rule the Hausas forever, they are also adding a political angle to it.
Enslaved Hausas and other ethnic groups in the North should see this movement as the only way to free themselves from Fulani domination and rule, or remain and be used for votes and troubles alone.
Prince Ify Chijioke