Press Release: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
16th January, 2015
MPAC Expresses Supports for the Coming Election
(Lagos, 16/01/2015) MPAC supports the coming elections as a necessary step in helping to realize the will and aspirations of the Nigerian people, who seek freedom, security, prosperity and social services to improve the quality of their daily lives and determine the course of the future of our country. We promote informed, multi-issue, committed voting and call for transparent election. In our ELECTION 2015; MPAC Guidelines and Recommendations, Muslim voters are urged to become well informed about election issues, candidates and their track records, and the political parties’ positions and policies regarding each issue. In a free and fair election, voting for the best candidates- even if they or their parties do not win and form a government- is not a “waste” of vote. Each valid ballot that is cast registers a political position, a ringing statement and sends a strong message to all politicians that informed voters’ concerns must be taken seriously. In that light, MPAC calls on all parties to respect the right of voters to vote according to their conscience in peace, make their votes count and for election workers and politicians to run peaceful and secure campaigns. We urge whomever God allows to become our elected representatives to build a Nigeria that is in harmony with core Islamic values, one that is committed to good governance, equality, and the rule of law for all people. We hope that the MPAC’s Guidelines and Recommendations provide useful input to all eligible voters that will participate at the ballot box in February, 2015 to vote for the best candidates that will serve our country well. As we approach the election day, the themes of tolerance, justice and freedom must become common goal-posts in the conduct of political players and their activities.
MPAC also calls on our Islamic scholars, Imams and Muslim student leaders to speak out forcefully in their day-to-day sermon and reiterate the Quran’s clear stand against violence at all times and especially during this election period. Muslim youth must not allow desperate and selfish politicians, who do not have their love and interests at heart, to use them as political thugs that will employ violence towards civilians or disrupt the exercise in anyway. As the Qur’an clearly states, “If anyone slays a human being… it shall be as though he had slain all mankind” (5:32). Islam considers the use of violence to achieve political purposes to be unacceptable as well as a complete violation of its principles. We must remain clear and honest with ourselves about destructive forces, and the damage those forces inflict on humanity. Also, MPAC calls on Muslim religious leaders to engage in and urge fervent prayers for peaceful and successful elections.
Once again, MPAC reminds the active players in the coming elections and our politicians especially that they have a heavy responsibility before God almighty, Who will take them into assured account, not to go down the well-trodden but self-destructive road of sectarian or political violence.
Muslim Public Affairs Centre, MPAC