Dear Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Your call for a so-called Day of Solidarity for Muslims reminds me of the saying of our people that “the white chicken does not recognize itself as an elder!”. I don’t know how long it would take you learn that we the Yoruba people don’t fight over religious matters. We are a peace-loving people and we don’t escalate contentions we resolve them with wisdom. This is what has preserved us for a few thousand years since Oduduwa engineered our civilization. We have had no violent religious conflicts for 1400 years in our history and don’t plan to kill ourselves over religious matters when God has not revealed himself to us as a murderer. Even if there was any form of religious misunderstanding in the International School Ibadan why would any genuine “son of the soil” approach the matter in such a combative manner?
We have had Muslims in Yoruba land for hundreds of years but your own profession is surely an aberration from the peaceful faith we know. You seem to be intent on escalating a local matter into something else despite the fact that you know that Northern Nigeria has practically been decimated by such contentions. While many conflict resolution consultants are praising our Omoluabi heritage as the possible solution to the religious troubles on the national and global level you are busy trying to tear down our cultural treasures with the slyness of a fox by hiding under religious pretenses. Just in case you missed your parents’ traditional teachings on religious tolerance we advise you to go watch the film “Tokunbo” by Moses Olaiya popularly known as Baba Sala. You will learn one thing or two there.
You may have forgotten but it was this same violent propensity that you manifested at TVC in Ikosi Ketu on a program where you were invited to discuss noise pollution in Lagos State in the days of Governor Fashola. You were quick to turn it into a Christian – Muslim contention and you almost beat up another guest speaker when he reasoned with you that Omoluabi do not speak in such a way. In fact, the program had to be shut down for a few minutes to help you regain your composure. On resumption you accused everyone on the set that there was a gang up while you were the one who had rejected the omoluabi standard of non-violent communication. You boasted on set that you were not afraid of the Nigerian Security Services and could dare anyone. When you were reminded on set that it was this kind of violent rhetoric that caused blood baths in Northern Nigeria you could not care less.
At this time, we may have to report you to the Royal Fathers in Yoruba land since your intent now has become obvious. We are barely coping with the influx of the boko haram and Fulani kidnappers and cannot understand why this does not give you concern. We are aware that the brains behind the global war on terrorism often give money to local collaborators to sabotage peaceful communities but we don’t want to believe that a man with your level of education would stoop so low.
Experts have told us that the sudden noises over religious dressing in the school concerned could be the work of foreign terrorists. They say that the school was deliberately chosen so that agitations could spill into the university community that hosts it. We congratulate you for attracting such attention to yourself just like El Rufai and his “body bags” comment.
We in the South West have nothing against hijabs or choir robes but we believe its all about decent dressing and the omoluabi attire surely meets all the divine standards for both Christianity and Islam. We are not ashamed of our kembe, ewu, buba and gele! We may even invite you to join our non-religious campaign for omoluabi designed school uniform all over the South West because of its cultural, economic and financial implications.
The omoluabi are happy that there is no compulsion in religion and both Christianity and Islam teach us that intelligent thought is what separates men from beasts. We have travelled to places like Dubai and London and we can see that every nation promotes its own culture since God never allowed any babies to bring items of clothing into this world. Finally, we hope that someone will teach you that the white dress you are proposing for your solidarity day is already known as the signature color of “aso ala” adorned by the followers of Obatala. Perhaps you may be trying to promote Obatala surreptitiously since you know that we enjoy religious liberties in the South West!
Chief O. A. Sangodeyimu