Friday Sermon: Enemies of the People!

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By Babatunde Jose

Allah commands justice, the doing of good,

and liberality to kith and kin, and He forbids all shameful deeds,

and injustice and rebellion:  He instructs you

that ye may receive admonition. (Quran 16:90)

 It was the late Chinua Achebe who wrote in his book, “There was a Country” that, “Nigeria is plagued by a home grown enemy: The political ineptitude, mediocrity, indiscipline, ethnic bigotry, (hedonism, hereditary spiritual paganism and monumental) corruption of the political class”. (Italics, mine) They have turned themselves into a gang of untamed gorillas; raping and sodomizing the populace and reveling in the looting and pillaging of the people’s commonwealth, to the utter consternation of the international community and in the process destroying the already dented image of this country. If not, what manner of wedding, in this very austere times, during which the so-called rich are also crying; the political elite (or Thieving Elite) converged on the little town of Minna, in Tapa country, in 34 private aircrafts; and were conveyed to the carnival venue in their advanced-party bulletproof SUVs; and literally consumed enough choice wines and gourmet that would shame some little kingdoms. This was a gathering that pales into insignificance, the annual meeting of ‘The Bilderberg Group, or Bilderberg Club of 120 to 150 people of the European and North American political elite, experts from industry, finance, academia, and the media, (established in 1954) otherwise referred to by conspiracy theorists as the ‘Illuminati’.

Abimbola Adelakun, in the Punch wrote, “Private jets, viewed against the backdrop of the grinding poverty and gross underdevelopment that plagues Africa, is obnoxious. Countries like the United States have more than half of all private jets in the world, but in their cultural context, their class ostentation makes far more sense than Africa where the majority live below poverty line. The sight of private jets in Africa is usually a testimony to the oppression of the masses by the rapacious ruling class and our habit of underdevelopment.”

Yet, these are the same people who have been shouting about restructuring from the palm tree tops, and would not allow us to rest with their talks of inequitable distribution of government patronage; demands for true federalism, resource control and all sorts of highfalutin political jargons. Backslapping each other, across party and ethnic lines and comparing notes on their next expedition on how to corner sizable portions of the recently passed national budget.

Shameless hooligans, they will not be deterred in their wanton gluttony and avaricious tendencies. They are worse than thieves who arrive in our homes at the dead of night to dispossess us of our property. These are pit-vipers, daylight highwaymen, who go about their nefarious business unmasked. Kamikaze ‘looters of the national treasury’; they are unmoved by the plight and suffering of the people they all profess to lead. They are not leaders by any stretch of imagination but barefaced marauders.

On a good Sunday morning, they line the Lagos Mariner with their exotic cars in front of the Cathedral of Christ and other places of Sunday worship; paying fat-fat tithes, thinking they can bribe God; forgetting that God is not a hypocrite and will never lend His Holy name to brigandage and unholy parade of ignominy.

We see them too at the mosques on Fridays: Here too, the weekly admonition to do good deeds and eschew Alfasha, injustice and conspiracy are strange to their ears. Like the Quran said, they are blind and deaf. And would not listen or follow the straight path.

Allah commands justice, the doing of good, and liberality to kith and kin, and He forbids all shameful deeds, and injustice and rebellion:  He instructs you that ye may receive admonition. (Quran 16:90). .But

. . . .. .Deaf, dumb, and blind, they are void of wisdom. (Quran 2:171)

On other days, these same evil men will be visiting their marabouts, diviners and babalawos and Okija Shrines;  doing ‘etutu‘ with a view to acquiring occult powers with which to escape the wrath of God and the people they have serially raped financially, economically and spiritually. They seek dark powers to deter and confuse ‘whistle blowers’ from identifying their concealed loot, which many no longer keep in pit-latrines, empty luxury flats and abandoned Bureau de Change. But they cannot mock God: ‘A thousand Samuels cannot escape from God’.

The Minna conclave has finally confirmed that these are our own illuminati. We need not go far in trying to know who our tormentors are. The newspaper said they numbered about 1,000 at the ‘Mansion de Mafiosi’. Though not all of the members were present; we can safely say that the people who are causing all our problems in this country are not up to 5,000; and that is being over-generous.

Mohammed Sanni Yahya captured the ignoble event in these poignant words: “They, the Nigerian elites landed in Minna with 34 private jets and all the splendor of richness. But none of them is a captain of industry, none has any intellectual property, none came into wealth by way of inheritance, they didn’t even win lottery, they all have one thing in common, they held various position in government in the country and plundered its commonwealth. The most painful of all is ‘NONE OF THEM IS ASHAMED OF HIS MISDEMEANORS’ instead they are showing off their ill-gotten wealth and we stupidly honor, worship and respect them.”  Hmmmmmm!

Rampaging brigands who think of nothing but to steal: Malaysia built world marvel and tallest twin towers at a time (1993 to 2004) for $1.6b; Taiwan built Taipei 101 (tallest building 2004 to 2009) for $1.9b and Dubai built Burj Khalifah the tallest height today for $1.5b: Here in Nigeria, our very own NSA shared $2.1b to politicians and cronies for election. You can’t beat that. What a people!

They have finally been identified: Enemies of the people. Shameless people! The hottest portion of hell shall be their abode. They forget too soon that God is a God of retribution: ‘The LORD is slow to anger and abundant in loving-kindness, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generations.’ Numbers 14:18

May we not share in the punishment for a crime we know nothing about?

Who will stop these men from their evil ways? Who will speak for the voiceless and downtrodden? Who will come to free our people from the bondage of ages? Where lies the hope of the common man? Will we ever get to the Promised Land? For now, it is ‘not yet Uhuru!’

The Prophet (SAW) said: “Allah does not punish the individuals for the sins of the community until they see the evil spreading among themselves, and while they have the power to stop it, do not do so.”(Ahmad).

Today, many of our Imams, pastors and political bootlickers are guilty of this and for sure, they have earned a visa to hell fire! “The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who, in times of great moral crisis, maintain their neutrality.” ― Dante Alighieri: “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse, and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality.” ― Desmond Tutu.

It is therefore time when our spiritual leaders must come out, real hard, against the licentiousness and decadence of our thieving leaders and their political prodigality.

The Quran said:

 “And O my people! Give full measure and weight in justice and reduce not the things that are due to the people, and do not commit mischief in the land, causing corruption. (Quran 1:85)

O you who believe! Stand out firmly for Allah and be just witnesses and let not the enmity and hatred of others make you avoid justice. Be just: that is nearer to piety, and fear Allah. Verily, Allah is Well-acquainted with what you do. (Quran 5:8)

The Prophet (SAW) continued to say: ‘By Allah you have to enjoin good (Maroof) and forbid evil (Munkar), and hold against the hand of the unjust ruler (Zalim), and force him on the truth strongly, or you have to limit him to the truth’. By this evidence, Allah (SWT) has prohibited us from remaining silent against evil (Munkar), and He commanded us to remove it. Allah (SWT) said; ‘Let it be from among you a group who call to the good, enjoin Maroof and deny Munkar’.

‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud used to say: “Whoever aids an oppressor or taught him an argument to nullify the right of an ordinary Muslims, has drawn upon himself the anger of Allah”.

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “In the near future there will be Amir’s (rulers) and you will like their good deeds and dislike their bad deeds. But one who approves of their bad deeds and imitates them is spiritually ruined”. We need not say more! These are lost souls and unrepentant sinners. They will never harken to the commandments of Allah:

The parable of those who reject Faith is as if one were to shout like a goatherd, to things that listen to nothing but calls and cries: Deaf, dumb, and blind, they are void of wisdom.(Quran 2:171)

To this extent therefore, we should today take a firm stand against corrupt and inept leaders. Enough is enough!

Those who have ears, let them listen; for, when ‘the come comes to become’, there will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.  

Barka Juma’at and happy weekend. 

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