What would divide the country fastest; Tribalism or Religion? The view of a Nigerian.

Yusuf Pappa Tomiwa reveals in his own words what he think would divide Nigeria. He said, "These thoughts have been gathering at the back of my mind for a while now. Read the entire article here.

Few days ago I wrote an article that was posted here regarding stability of Nigeria in connection to the threat posed by Islamic extremist, Boko Haram. I am not sure how peace collaborators could find better ways to resolve religious conflicts. It is my hope that the Nigeria case in point would be resolve before it gets out of hands.

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Comment by Francis Okeny Silvio on September 2, 2011 at 5:29pm

I agree with you about the hooliganism and barbarianism, however, think of religion that promises its followers virgins in paradise if they dies to protect it, and if you don't die, the rest of the people will be your slaves....it will definitely initiate extremism, or pushes one to destroy others.

In regards to your comparison in Ghana, there is a lot you don't know about Islam and its ideology. If you read about the spread of Islam, is not different from that of Christianity, it is the same in everything, except that Islam is a bit late and looks new. The spread of Islam starts with peace and then force, exactly as the prophet of Islam did in Saudi Arabia, he killed all those who refused to submit to Islam. Take note that Islam is peaceful in Ghana because they have not yet reach the required amount to exert force on non-Muslims. Normally it starts with the right of the majority when they are Muslims, then they ask for the implementation of Islamic sharia law in which non-Muslim will be asked to pay Jisya, (tax) to Muslims for the protection. This tax applies only to non-Muslims and Ghana has not reach the implementation of sharia, that is why there is no conflict....but believe me that conflict will come, it does not matter how long it will take. Nigeria state in the north was the example I gave in my previous article. I believe in peaceful coexistence, tolerance, however, the facts of the matter is far beyond believing that religion is not the matter...it is the matter in my view. Karl Max described religion as Opium, Anthropologist called it a culture and I agree with those descriptions. If you want to fight someone in Africa, just criticize his culture, then you will be at war in seconds. On the other hand, if you smoke Opium, you will not sleep until when you smoke it.

Best wishes.

Comment by Chief Suleman Chebe on September 2, 2011 at 4:32pm

I am a Muslim by upbringing and I totally agree with you that although I see Islam as one of the fairest religions on earth, I also see a consistent and alarming degree of hooliganism and barbarism often perpetrated in the innocent name of Islam.

I think we have to make a clear distinction between Islam and Arabian culture which I think is totally outdated and probably unfit for the 21st century.

By the way, I believe the whole world can learn a good lesson in Ghana where Muslims and Christian live happily in peace and perfect harmony.

The other thing I don’t get is that if Muslims are so scared of living with none Muslims, why don’t they all migrate to Arabia and leave the rest of the world in peace?

Anyway, I don’t necessarily think it is religion we have to blame. It is the conduct of every bad individual that must be questioned irrespective of their faith. Nigeria in my view is suffering from negative tribalism but they hide under the thick blanket of religion for immunity!  


Comment by Francis Okeny Silvio on September 2, 2011 at 4:09pm
Chief Suleman Chebe, I agree with you to suspend all religion from the continent, however, Islam is more than just a religion. While other religions, as we know them theologically fits the definitions of religion. Islam is a way of life, a religion and also politically a system of rule. It is sad that it does not recognize or tolerate other religion. In my research, you can trace most conflict with the presence of Islam, and other religions; in Sudan, Nigeria, Egypt, Philippines, Iraq, Israel etc. Personally I believe that 99% of the active global conflicts is between Muslims and other religions. I also know that the Muslims' interpretation of the holy book the Koran, will not help build peace, given the words said by extremists such as Boko Haram, that I quoted. We had the same problem in the Sudan, and if the end was separation, then I believe the same will happen in Nigeria. A Muslim believe that when he dies propagating Islam, he/she will go to paradise, and if he lives, he will be masters of non-Muslims, and ideology that will never bring peace between a Muslim and non-Muslim....
Comment by Chief Suleman Chebe on September 2, 2011 at 11:26am


Very interesting article indeed! To my mind, both religion and negative tribalism are sinful conduct of the devil in Africa. I think it is probably time to have a referendum to suspend all religions in Africa for one decade so that we can reason together sensibly and develop. By the way, it is not only Islam that is destroying Africa but also the new wave of Christian Evangelism and profit making churches. Do you know that people in Ghana people pay a lot of money to receive prayers from pastors? Why should anybody for the love of God. Why Africa is such a mess?

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