Monday, March 27, 2023
Prof Abdufatah Speaks on the Importance of Unity of the Ummah PDF Print E-mail

Dauda Nalado reports-The Afternoon session of the unity week schedule featured a speech on Importance of Unity by a professor of Islamic jurisprudence and sociology from University of Maiduguri in the person of Abdulfatah A. Olayiwola.

  He deliberated on the need for unity in Muslim Ummah.  He recalled that he had once visited Sayyeed Zakzaky (H) as far back as 1992 to discuss on the issue of unity among Muslims. The presentation was done in English.
The speaker, however, made a brief Hausa summary afterwards. In his introductory notes, Professor Abdulfatah tried to explore the definition of Islam. He stressed the fact that unity in Islam is an obligation. He backed this by verses of the Qur’an and some prophetic traditions. He noted that people amplify trivial issues to cause disunity. The basic tenets of Islam are common to all schools of thought. The differences, which are minor, are magnified, he re-emphasized.


He identified both internal and external sources of disunity. The internal ones, he said, are as a result of selfish interests and ignorance. The external ones, which affect not only Nigeria but other countries in the Muslim World, are being perpetrated by Europeans. Unfortunately some insiders help them in this direction. Discussing on the consequences of Disunity, the Prof noted that they could be grave and would continue to multiply if not checked. He then explained some political, social, economic and religious consequences of disunity. Prof Abdulfatah mentioned manifestations of disunity which, among other things, include absence of a single recognized leadership; takfir (mutual accusations of kufr- infidelity); differing times of holding religious activities; proliferation of unnecessarily multiple mosques; tribal stigmatization; proliferation of associations and finally introduction of discord into new areas that need to be exposed to Islam.

After his analysis, the Professor suggested the following as the way out: Central independent and non sectarian strategic planning body to address unity issues should be established. Similar centers should also be established at the state and local levels. Traditional institutional roles and titles should be re-Islamized. More tolerance needs to be exercised among Muslims of various inclinations. Scholars and followers should exhibit maturity in correcting errors. Muslims should leave any ambiguous issues for God to judge in the hereafter. Due to time constraint, the usual remarks of Sayyeed Zakzaky were postponed. Maghrib and Isha’ prayers were conducted.