Sanusi condemns girl-child marriage
Links practice, Internet exposure to terrorism enlistment
FORCEFUL marriage of the girl-child and the exposure of youths to information technology through the social media are the major reasons the youths get enlisted in terrorism and similar social vices, according to the Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II.
Speaking in Kaduna at the weekend during the 10th Annual Ramadan Lecture organised by the Voice of Nigeria (VON), Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) and the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN), he noted that a product of girl-child marriage does not enjoy any parental care and so quickly finds interest in insurgencies at youthful age.
“Youths learn fast the new ideologies from the Internet and after watching, they go to Iraq and Syria to join the jihadist group,” he said. Sanusi, who spoke on “The Challenges of Muslim Ummah in the 21st Century” as topic of the lecture, tasked the Muslim Ummah to give the youth both Western and Islamic education, teaching them the right direction.
He added: “Are we still living in the era when fathers can force their daughters into marriage without their permission? Yes we are. Early marriage? Yes, in Nigeria, and it is hurting and destroying our society. We are the ones to address these social issues because they are problems.
“Taking her out of school and forcing her into marriage without education result to having a child from her who does not have a mother that can give the child proper training.
That is a child that gets on drugs, Indian hemp, or joins Boko Haram. All these things are connected. We have to face these challenges. “Today, the youth go on the computer and learn Islam from Facebook and twitter.
They learn Islam from the videos they watch on Facebook and after 14 to 15 hours watching new things, they become jihadists. They get up, go to Iraq or Syria or somewhere and join the group.
And there are no controls.” Sanusi spoke further: “Right inside your house, your son can be sitting in the bedroom getting indoctrinated into extremism without your knowledge. We need to watch what our children watch, and to talk to them.
If we do not give them the correct Islamic education, they will find the wrong education on the Internet. “This is very important because we have spent so much time in ignorance.
I know we must send our children to school to acquire Western education, which is very important. You have children going to England and becoming radicalised in America on the Internet, not only in Muslim countries.
“We need to ensure that we give our children correct Islamic education, especially to take them away from religious extremism. In the 21st Century, the Muslim Ummah is facing enormous challenges.
Such includes “changing from traditional lifestyle to modern lifestyle, the increasing independence of women and awareness of their rights, which is huge, especially on matters of marriage and divorce.”
Meanwhile, the FRCN Director-General, Ladan Salihu, advocated regulation of such Islamic preaching that tends to pollute the minds of the Muslim Ummah, saying: “The situation is about people whose preaching are not checked. Those who preach nowadays are preaching to win groups to their sides, not souls to the way of Allah.”