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Published On: Fri, Oct 30th, 2020

Muslim Clerics seek return of looted goods

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By Osaigbovo Iguobaro, Benin

Muslim Clerics in Benin City have urged Muslim Ummahs involved in the looting of government and individuals’ properties during the #EndSARS protest in the Country to return all the goods in their possession for the Celebration Eid – El- Maulud, which is the birthday of Prophet Muhammad.
Ibrahim Oyarekhua, and Edo State Chairman of Muslim Pilgrims Board and Malam Nurudeen Asunogie disclosed this to newsmen on Thursday.
While enjoining Muslim faithful to emulate the virtues of integrity, honesty and piety, as epitomized by the Prophet, they noted that those who participated in the looting of government and individuals’ properties in the Country, especially the COVID-19 palliative materials at various Dtates warehouses, could only get the reward of the celebration if only them returned the looted goods in their possessions.
The Clerics also urged non-Muslim faithful involved in the act to do the same by returning goods in their possessions.
According to them, for the fear of Allah, all Muslim faithful involved in the destruction and looting of government and individuals’ properties, especially the COVID-19 palliative materials, to immediately return all the items stolen and in their possessions.
Condemning the attack, destruction of public and private institutions’ properties in some parts of the Country, the Clerics, called on the government to put in place policies to entrench good governance in the Country.
Speaking, Nurudeen Asunogie, said government needs to address the imbalance in the society, between the have and the have not.
“I want to remind the Muslim Ummahs that there is absolutely nothing unique about celebrating the birthday of Prophet Muhammad (PUBH) if we are not going to adorn ourselves on the virtues of integrity, honesty and sacrifice which the prophet epitomizes.
“I think, generally, we need to address the imbalance in the society because the divides is rather too wide between the have and the have not.
“Those who do not have constitute a very terrible and frightening majority. So, they will also drown those who have caused the state resources to coagulate around themselves.
“I also think government should bring about fair distribution of wealth in the country,” he added.
He urge those involved in the wanton destruction, looting of public and private institutions’ properties in the Country to seek for sincere repentance from Allah, adding that destruction and stealing of other people’s property are aliens to Islam.
Asunogie, stated that once a Muslim deviated from the commands of Allah, he or she becomes irrelevant in the scheme of things in this world and in the hereafter.
“Society is created along two lines. These are the evil and good. If you are not a thief there is no way in the first place you would have destroyed and looted government and private property.
“It is crime. If they escape punishment in this world, they will not in the hereafter, except they sincerely repent and return whatever is in their possessions.
“If there is nothing with them, they should seek forgiveness from those who have suffered in the cause of their actions.
“If they do not, on the last day, they will be carrying the burden for which they will regret endlessly because it has no justification under any guise,” he added.
On his part, Ibrahim Oyarekhua, who said the #EndSARS protest started peacefully in the country, condemned the way and manner hoodlums hijacked it.
Oyarekhua, opined that many Nigerians believe that the protest would have been able to unite the country against bad leadership.
“We don’t believe that Muslims would have participated in this unwholesome act, and, if they were, and for some of them to have looted whatever they have looted either small or big, the earlier they return the goods to where they looted them, the better for them.
“If they think nobody, saw them when they looted the goods, it will be a burden on them on the day of judgment.
“Whatever they have looted and if they refused to return them now, God the Almighty will surely request for those things from them on the last day, to account for it and if not, they will be punished.

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