The Chief Imam of University of Abuja, Prof Taofeek Abdul-Azeez, has said the series of terrorism acts bedevilling Nigeria “are state-induced.”
Abdul-Azeez was quick to add that he does not mean the All Progressives Congress (APC) – led government, rather some powers-that-be, who according to him, have constituted themselves to be “states within the Nigerian state.”
He spoke on Sunday in Abeokuta while delivering the maiden Ramadan lecture of the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ), Ogun Council, with the theme: “Terrorism and Islamaphobia: The Muslims, The Media On The Call.”
The clergyman, who described terrorism as an “economic enterprise”, argued that “no insurgency lasts more 38 hours without connection of the powers-that-be.”
The scholar equally lamented that Islam has been discredited through the instrumentality of what he called stereotyping and mind-setting.
According to him, it is more worrisome that the media have aided the mind-set which portrayed Islam as a “violent religion.”
“What we have today in Nigeria is state-induced terrorism. When I say state, I do not mean the APC government; far from it. But the state in Nigeria today has become diversified. It’s no longer in the hands of a corporate group; there are states within the Nigerian state.
“There are former owners of government, power and office; they lost office. They hold onto power and they have influence. They are owners of government, but those in office are strangers.
“So, what is happening is terrorism to remove them from office. And they are just a miserable minority,” Abdul-Azeez said.
The Islamic scholar asked media practitioners to be more responsible, professional and set agenda for the government rather than embarking on what he termed “emotional and sensational reporting.”