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Government & Politics

Kaduna Preaching Bill Unconstitutional, Says Ahmad Gumi

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Ahmad Gumi, a prominent Muslim cleric, has described the preaching bill that has been generating controversy in Kaduna state as unconstitutional.

Nasir El-Rufai, governor of Kaduna, had said the bill was an updated version of an existing law required to curtail inflammatory sermons by faith leaders.

But in an interview in the April edition of The Interview, Gumi said the bill had gone too far.

“If you are trying to fight terrorism and extremism, you don’t clamp on the freedom of speech, freedom of thought and freedom of propagation of thoughts. These liberties are enshrined in the constitution,” he said.

However, he said that the bill could drive extremism underground.

The cleric also described Boko Haram as “100% a Muslim problem”, accusing some people in the north of “cooperating with and working to protect them.”

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“Boko Haram as it now is cannot prosper in Ibadan, because the locals will expose them. The same in Enugu. The people agitating for Biafra cannot prosper in the north because they will be exposed.

“We have to understand that these people are from amongst us and that the society is not doing enough to bring these elements out. I can tell you that Boko Haram is 100% a Muslim problem.”

Gumi, who also described the agitation for Biafra as “analogue,” challenged Muslim leaders to do more to combat Boko Haram.

He also spoke on the military-Shiite clash in Zaria; the ongoing investigation into the $2.1billion arms scandal involving Sambo Dasuki, the former national securuty adviser; and the anti-corruption war of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government.

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