Hundreds of Muslims under the aegis of National Muslim Youth Organization (NACOMYO) marched through the streets of Ado-Ekiti on Tuesday in protest against alleged plan by Ekiti State Governor Ayo Fayose to demolish mosques built within fuel stations in the state.
The Muslim Youths who were non-violent began the protest from Odo -Ado through the home of the President of league of Imams and Alfas for the south west region, Sheikh Jamiu Kewulere and to Ewi’s palace to ventilate their anger on the planned demolition of mosques in the state.
The leader of the protesters, Tajudeen Ahmed in an interview described the move by the state government to demolish mosques as a calculated attempt to oppress Muslims in the state, stressing that Fayose’s administration has failed to incorporate Muslims in his administration.
The President General, Supreme Council of Islamic affairs in Ekiti State, Jamiu Kewulere appealed to the protesters to sheath their swords, noting that he would seek interface with the Governor on the matter.
Facts that emerged on the reason why Ekiti state governor Ayodele Fayose ordered the demolition of all mosques situated in filling stations in the state was that the order is not unconnected to the tussle between the state government and Petroleum dealers whom the governor earlier ordered to re-validate their licenses or face revocation of licenses and even forfeit their lands.
In a letter, the demolition letter tagged “Removal Of Place Of Worship Within Petrol Filling Stations” and signed by one Adeyiola Ibitoye, the permanent secretary in Ekiti State ministry of Lands and Housing, the letter reads that the demolition order was made necessary as a “precautionary measure” to forestall the ugly fire incident which engulfed a filling station at Ijigbo in January.
But further checks reveal that the face-off may have now turned personal. Being that One of the foremost Fuel dealers in Ekiti state is Sulayman Akinbami who in his usual practice build mosque in every of his filling station. Sulayman Akinbami is also the Secretary of the Petroleum Dealers Association in Ekiti State and is one of the leading lights in the struggle against the state government.
In the said letter which was directed to Sulayman Akinbami, he was ordered to demolish all mosques in his filling stations within seventy two hours while the letter was served on the night of Monday 3rd of April 2017.
Sources close to the case revealed that the governor is on a vendetta mission in order to cow the union and feel it can only be achieved if Akinbami is demoralized and the only way to do that is to ask him to demolish all mosques in his filling stations within seventy two hours.
The source further questioned the rationale behind the brigandage approach saying “even if such order is to be passed,why giving us seventy two hours? Many of these mosques are Jaamia mosques (Mosques where Friday congregational prayer are offered), he should not drag the Muslim community to the fight he has with Petroleum dealers because this will be tantamount to declaring war on Islam by the governor” the source submitted.