In a statement today, the Director of MURIC, Professor Ishaq Akintola said: “we reject the purported conversion of the kidnapped girls. It is cowardly, shameful, ridiculous and preposterous. It is sacrilege.”
The Boko Haram leader, Abubakar Shekau, had released a video yesterday announcing that the abducted girls have been converted to Islam. He also threatened not to release them until some of their members in Nigerian jails are set free.
Professor Akintola said that such conversion does not hold water in Islam because a non-Muslim can only be converted on his or her own free will.
“We have no iota of doubt that the girls ‘converted’ under duress. Such ‘conversion’ is null and void under the Shari’ah. The Glorious Qur’an is very explicit in this regard as it says, “There is no compulsion in religion…” (Laa ikrahun fii ad-diin” (Qur’an 2:256).
The group insisted that the the so called conversion is baseless, unfounded and of no validity whatsoever, adding that “it exists only in the hallucinated imageries of Shekau’s demented mind.”
The group called on the Federal Government of Nigeria to dismiss Shekau’s offer of exchange of Boko Haram prisoners for the kidnapped girls, saying: “a man who orders the invasion and kidnap of innocent young girls is honour-blind. Shame on Boko Haram! Shekau has no modicum of integrity left in his anatomy. He has no intention of honouring this deal. He is trying to buy time. He is digging in.”
MURIC also called on all churches and mosques to pray for the downfall of Boko Haram, adding that this “renegade group is out to defame and distort the true teachings of Islam. Members of Boko Haram are rebellious subjects and enemies of peace. We charge the Nigerian Army to go back to the drawing board and evolve more potent strategies for crushing this renegade group. To crush Boko Haram is a task that must be done.”