The League of Imams and Alfas in Ogun has decried the frequent and incessant attacks on Muslims across the state by traditional worshippers, calling on the state government to stop such attacks and bring culprits to justice.
Tajudeen Adewunmi, Secretary General, League of Imams and Alfas in the state stated this in a statement made available to newsmen in Abeokuta on Tuesday.
Adewunmi expressed concern over recent and continuos attacks on Muslims by the Oro, Agemo, Eluku and Egungun worshipers in some parts of the state without any provocations.
He noted that there had never been any instance where Muslims in any part of the state had stopped traditional worshippers from practising their choice of religion.
He explained that the Nigerian constitution stated clearly that Muslims and every other person of other religions should be able to practise their religious beliefs without being molested or prevented by any person or group.
“The situation in Ogun State is contrary to that constitutional provision, given the plethora of attacks on Muslims by some traditional worshippers in many parts of the state at various times.
“We have it on good records that, such unprovoked attacks by the traditional worshipers have been on repeatedly in the last 10 years.
“On July 29, 2019. Oro worshippers invaded various mosques within Ipokia Local Government Area wielding dangerous weapons and charms with which they attacked Muslims who fled for their lives. Several properties were destroyed and many people suffered various bodily injuries.
“Also, despite the intervention of the leadership of league of Imam and Alfa in Ogun State, on September 8, 2019, the Oro worshippers attacked Muslims in Ipokia, Tube and its environs, during daylight. It is worthy of note that the recalcitrant attitude of the Oniko of Ikolaje Oba John Oyekunle at the peace meeting emboldened the traditionalists for the subsequent attacks.
“Whereas, in 2018, the Ogun State High Court in Ipokia had declared the imposition of curfew on the People of Ipokia by Oro worshippers in daytime as illegal. The court also declared that Oro festival or ritual could only be celebrated between 12:am and 4: am.
“The most recent happened in Ipokia, Ikenne, Iperu, and some other area of the state.
“On October 22, 2019, the Eluku worshippers attacked Zumuratul Mu’min Mosque in Amororo area of Iperu town in Remo North local government while the Muslims were preparing for the dusk (maghrib) prayers .
” In all the occurrences over the years, culprits have not been treated in a manner that could serve as deterrent to others.
The secretary -general added that it was important for government to ensure the safety of the lives and properties of all citizens, especially, from unwarranted attacks by some religious adherents on others.
He urged the state government to ensure that justice was done at all times such that culprits of wrong behaviours and actions were appropriately punished to serve as deterrent to others.
“As citizens of Ogun State, law abiding and peacefully exercising our religious rights, we request the state government to ensure that the provision of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is entrenched and enforced.