Few years ago I was on board with four other Ebira brothers en route from one part of Ebiraland heading to another when after our discussion tasted flavours over myriad of religious issues, a man I suspected to be in his 60s and obviously a religiously tasteless person said in Ebira dialect that (Anebira vana maheke Ochorku) This in translation means Ebira people are people who practice a diluted religion just like the mixture of "Rice and beans" (Orchorku).
The first appearance of this statement induced a fraction of uncommon heartache in me that I felt like bashing this old man but at a second view, I had to immediately retrace my sentimental driven mood regardless of his mocking tone and ask myself if he is saying the truth which in entirety he is eighty percent right judging from the other angle!
If what happened at the Okene Jum'at ground yesterday happened in any of the core Northern states we will say this can never happen in Ebiraland by attaching them to Ignorance or religious Fanatism!
If what happened yesterday happened in Ihima they will say this can never happen in Okene and we would attach it to the madness oriented sentiments of "they are Yorubas" or Ihimas are half animals whose completion remains only the tail but it's now evident that Okenes are always the founding fathers of this animalistic tendencies before shifting blames! (I am sorry if I sound unworthy or sentimental here because I will sound as such again and again if that will send the message needed knowing very well what is obtainable if table turns )
The questions are;
Do Okene know that outside Kogi Okene means the whole Ebiraland?
Do they know that they are not Only portraying bad pictures of Ebiraland but equally that of Islam?
This tussle of Imamship between okene and Okene should equally put the rest of Ebira to questions if truly the Mosque in Okene belongs to the whole of Ebira and not Okene.
Let me remained Okene that they appear as the map of Ebiraland and by extension has equally brought upon Ebira a new bad trace which might be emulated by other onlookers.
I might be too minute in all ramifications to judge this issues but are these still the traces of our noble Prophet Muhammad (saw)
I can still reckon with some scripture chapters that when he was becoming weak he summoned another to take over his mantle of leadership but here in Okene it's a different scenario!
How do we change the notion of other religion that Islam is a religion of peace when we are chasing and burning each others properties to flames?…
To be continued.
AUDU ABDULFATAH LECO WRITES