Nasrul-Lahi-l-Fatih (NASFAT) has called on Nigerians to be wary of teachings of the ‘overnight Imams, Scholars and Pastors.’
The Chief Missioner of NASFAT, Imam Abdul-Azeez Onike, gave the warning while speaking on Channels TV on Tuesday on the killing of a female student of the Shehu Shagari College of Education, Sokoto, Deborah Samuel, by her school mates for blasphemy.
He advised the peole to always seek a second opinion on crrical issues from the right religious leaders instead of turning to those, who are “overnight scholars, pastors and imams that have retired and have nowhere to go again and then pick up the Bible or Qur’an and start dishing out rulings.”
He said Muslim clerics and Islamic organizations should prioritize the teaching of appropriate fundamentals of the religion as well as the principles of Islamic jurisprudence.
He said it was important that the religious leaders should continually promote the teaching of the ideals and objectives of the religion in a more holistic manner.
Onike, who is also a member of the British Association for Islamic Studies and a member of the American Academy of Religion, however, condemned the killing of Deborah Samuel and any act of jungle justice or extrajudicial killings.
He said: “We need to continue to allow the text to speak to us as we teach people the fundamentals of our religion. And that’s what NASFAT is doing.
“We are promoting principles of Islamic jurisprudence. If anybody gives you a verdict, you must find out how such a person arrived at the ruling.
“If somebody has been given the orientation that the religion preaches peace and primarily about justice, love, wisdom and goodness, when anybody tells you something different, he should seek a second opinion.
“But if what the scholars, church or mosques are teaching you is about enmity and they cannot quote the Qur’an or even if they quote the Bible, you let them know fundamentally that our religion is for peace, our religion if for goodness and justice.
“As leaders, we should to always consider the public impact and benefit of our actions at all times. What Islamic principles seek to achieve is peace, harmony, justice and peaceful co-existence.
“If anything wants to discourage that achievement, we will take it aside for a while, and that is our religion. People need to know the objective of our religion. People need to know how to arrive at making Islamic ruling.
“People don’t need to be scholars to understand this. If a doctor recommends 10 dose of Paracetamol for you in the morning, 10 in the afternoon and 10 in the evening, you will not use it.
“We are imploring our people to know those who have studied this religion, overnight Imams, scholars and pastors and always seek a second opinion.
“The overnight scholars are the ones that have retired and have nowhere to go again and then pick up the Bible or Qur’an and start dishing out rulings. People like this will never allow the text to speak to them.”