MURIC the Muslim Rights Concern has lashed out at Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for removing Nasir El Rufai as speaker at it annual event.
MURIC told DAILY POST through its Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola that the withdrawal of the invitation of Nasir El Rufai as speaker at the 2020 Virtual Annual General Conference (AGC) is parochial, myopic and jejune .
MURIC’s statement added, “NBA yesterday dropped Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, the governor of Kaduna State from the list of speakers at its Virtual AGC which is billed to start on 26th August, 2020. It is high level prejudice. The NBA as a group of learned literati should know better. It is parochial, myopic and jejune.
“The fact that NBA took the ill-advised step on account of a petition written by a group, Open Bar Initiative whose main fear is expressed as ‘One can be sure that he will also use the given platform to advance his conflated narrative, designed to deceive and confuse the nation on the real causes of the killings’ exposes NBA’s impatience, intolerance and self-conceit.
“Is it not better to hear him out than to lock him out? Is it not better to jaw-jaw than to war-war? The departure of the ambassador, they say, is the beginning of war.
“By dropping El-Rufai, NBA has declared war on the other side in the Southern Kaduna crisis. By so doing, it lost a golden chance to be part of the solution to the conflict. The NBA has elected to be part of the problem.
“Was it not Jane Goodall who said, ‘Change happens by listening and then starting a dialogue with the people who are doing something you don’t believe is right’? Change cannot come through rejection and exclusion.
“How justifiable is the NBA’s decision to exclude Governor El-Rufai from the virtual conference when people like Chief Olusegun Obasanjo of Odi and Zaki Biam fame and Governor Nyesom Wike are among the speakers?
“Who bulldozed the hotels of innocent people despite court orders? Who visited unspeakable violence on political opponents?
“Should NBA hobnob with people linked to genocide and undemocratic practices? So why demonise El-Rufai where killers of innocent people and enemies of democracy are idolised?
“MURIC calls on all lawyers from the North to boycott NBA’s AGC in protest against this open declaration of war on Northern Kaduna. Every little action of injustice must spark a reaction if tyranny is to be stopped in the world.
“The NBA has crossed the red line in human relations and conflict management. No single lawyer from the North should participate in the AGC either as a resource person or as a participant unless the NBA rescinds its decision to drop El-Rufai from the list of speakers. Injury to one is injury to all.”
NAIJA NEWS NG learnt that Kaduna State Governor has also on Thursday reacted to the news of his removal as speaker at the NBA event . El Rufai’s spokesman, Muyiwa Adekeye in a statement said the Governor’s removal is an unfortunate embrace of injustice .
Read Muyiwa Adekeye’s statement below :
“While the decision about who speaks at its event is clearly the NBA’s, Malam El-Rufai wishes to make clear that he did not seek the platform and is not agitated that he has one less speaking engagement,” the statement read.
However, the circumstances of the last few days warrant some comments. That a professional organisation has elected to endorse a one-sided narrative on a profound national issue is something that its members may wish to reflect upon.
For an association, whose bread and butter is about justice, to make a ruling based on the stridency of people who lampoon judicial processes against certain individuals without hearing the other side is odd. It bears noting that in its response to pressure, the NBA leadership has signalled an unfortunate embrace of injustice, unfairness, absence of fair hearing and total disregard for the rule of law.”