A lecturer at the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies, University of Ibadan, Professor Afis Oladosu says majority of struggles branded as religious are less about God.
Professor Oladosu who is also the Dean Faculty of Arts, University of Ibadan stated this at the Trenchard Hall while delivering the 489th Inaugural lecture of the institution.
He said a lot of conflicts being tagged as religious were actually less about the creed or faith and much more about gaining power and material prosperity.
“Spaces of conflicts around the world commonly branded as religious are actually less about God and more about the preservation of spaces of power and economic survival”.
Professor Oladosu identified promotion of peaceful relationships by government agencies among various ethnic and religious identities and communities as essential for development of the country.
He called on Ministries, Directorates and Agencies, MDAs of government to remove all policies and regulations that constitute infractions to the nation’s constitution especially those that have to do with freedom of religion.
“Is it because I am a Muslim? is being asked in the town,far away from the quietude of the gown. It is being asked in the Nigerian Immigration Office where Muslim women are constantly being told to remove their hijab as a precondition for the issuance of international passports. Is it because I am a Muslim? was the question Amasa Firdaws asked when she was initially denied the chance to be called to bar simply because she wore Muslim Hijab “.
The don called for the expansion of African studies programme of University of Ibadan to include Middle Eastern and North African Studies as this would enhance intra- African relationship.
“Indeed, the establishment of a program in Middle Eastern and North African Studies in this part of the world has become a desideratum. Such a program when established here in Ibadan would strengthen intra- African relations and enhance the status of our University as the primus interpares in the sub-saharan region”.
In a remark on the lecture, JAMB Registrar, Professor Ishaq Oloyede said some individuals used multiple identities to pretend to be fighting religious cause.
The well attended lecture had in attendance other dignitaries including Oyo State Deputy Governor, Engr Rauf Olaiyan, his wife, Professor Amdalat, Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Edo and Delta, Alhaji Dawud Akinola and Executive Secretary, Muslim Ummah of Southwest Nigeria, MUSWEN, Professor Muslih Yahya.
The topic of the inaugural lecture is ” Arab-Islamism, Afrabism and Contrapuntal Criticism”.
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