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Buhari’s coming into politics has accentuated the class struggle in Nigeria- Sheikh (Dr.) Ahmad Gumi

“In the run up to the last election, I wrote a letter to President Jonathan not to contest because the North will reject him. I asked him to allow anybody to be the PDP flag bearer but not him because the north will reject him because somehow, he was linked with Boko Haram. I also wrote another letter to Buhari, advising him to rest his ambition because if he runs, Nigeria will be polarised. What Nigeria needed at that time were people who will mend fences.
Buhari’s coming into politics has accentuated the class struggle in Nigeria. The antagonism between the rich and poor can sometimes be more dangerous that religious differences. I saw this class struggle coming because the masses will always rush to Buhari because they believe that he will bring justice and food on the table for them. They want him to emasculate the rich for them; he either does it or they will categorise him as a failure.
So, once you put a leader in that kind of situation, then you are already introducing a class struggle into the already compounded problem. In addition to our tribal problems, our religious differences and the North/South divide, there is now a class problem because the talakawa just want to see the rich imprisoned. And if they are tasking the president to do that, and if he does not do it he is a failure, then he will definitely fail because he cannot do it.
So, the kind of leader that we needed at that time was one who will pacify the rich and still have the confidence of the poor. By so doing, the rich will help in building the economy by setting up companies that will generate employment.
That is why the Prophet (SAW) said that you can get with leniency what you can never get by force. He said that when leniency enters anything, it decorates it. And strictness, violence blemishes and destroys the beauty of whatever they enter.
So, what you get with diplomacy, you cannot get with violence. If you want to deal with corruption in Nigeria, you have to deal with it in a diplomatic way. No one should be afraid of returning the money that they have looted. But when the poor is always rating your administration by the number of people you have caught, then you are in trouble because you cannot catch the big ones.
Because if you do so, you will destroy your government and if you don’t catch them, the poor will say that you have changed. The president is even fighting the war on corruption the wrong way. When you fight corruption, it will naturally fight back. Corruption has become an international institution. You will hear foreign leaders condemning corruption but they are engaging in it because their countries benefit from it.
So, the President needs to tread carefully in fighting corruption with the way things are now because it will frighten the upper class of the society. It will put them on pause and this is not healthy for a developing economy like our own.
You need the rich to infuse money into the system and fund projects. For example, I went to a fund raiser of an Islamic school. Big men came but not a single one donated a kobo, not even a pledge, because they may be asked where they got the money from.
So, there is fright and this is hurtful to the economy. The war on corruption should purely be a law and order issue.
Right now, if EFCC invites someone, the next day it is in the newspapers. The damage this kind of thing causes to people’s reputation is very severe, especially if they are found to be innocent.” Sheikh (Dr.) Ahmad Gumi as culled from New Telegraph 15th [today]May 2016

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