- As plaintiffs demands N200 Million for “defamation of character”
- Mamu insist they are corrupt and stands by earlier reports against them
The two embattled factional leaders of Jama’atu Izalatul Bidi’a Wa’ikamatus Sunnah (JIBWIS), Mallam Abdullahi Bala Lau and his secretary, Mallam Kabir Gombe have jointly sued DESERT HERALD publisher, Mallam Tukur Mamu and Fuza Communication Services Limited, publishers of DESERT HERALD newspaper before a Kaduna High Court demanding the sum of N200 Million as cost of damages of two stories authored by Mamu which they claimed has defamed their integrity and character.
It would be recalled that there was wide condemnation even among the sunni followers about the dress code of the two flamboyant clerics, how they conducted themselves and how they proudly publicised and bombarded the social media with pictures and images of their highly misplaced and expensive recent foreign trips. Even though such dress code including scenes where they wore a cowboy hat as proudly posted by the two clerics is not forbidden in Islam, followers of the sunni and indeed the entire Muslim community across the country expected them to appear more decent and condemned their decision to proudly post pictures that are supposed to be exclusively personal, and argued that their conduct and mode of dressing since it is also not consistent with the cultures and traditions of northern Nigeria and Islam, has ridiculed Islam and their acclaimed positions in JIBWIS. Several examples were offered by many writers including Mamu in a triggered online debate about their highly embarrassing conduct abroad and how they appeared very proud to circulate the disgraceful pictures. Examples and instances of similar visits abroad during hamattan season by eminent scholars like late Sheikh Abubakar Mahmud Gumi, late Sheikh Ahmed Deedat and several Nigerian leaders (Muslims and Christians) and other statesmen where they always appeared very decent and proudly in their traditional/native attire were given in condemning the seeming lackadaisical attitude of the two scholars. And even as Bala Lau and Kabir Gombe in a desperate damage control efforts claimed that their jamboree foreign trips was 100 percent financed by those that invited them, the likes of Mamu and many others were prompt in criticising the justification behind spending so much on a supposed and unnecessary foreign da’awa at a time thousands at home are either being converted into Christianity while many others completely losing their faith due to ignorance and failure of the likes of Bala Lau to judiciously used the millions they are collecting as donations to reach out to the most vulnerable and remotest locations to preach the true words of Allah and Tauhid. As at today and apart from the propaganda and lies concocted by Kabir Gombe enumerating the ‘success’ of their jamboree trip to the United Kingdom, Germany etc during a calculated Muhadara they sponsored in Abuja after coming back, ostensibly to douse the tension they created while abroad, no one saw either the audio or video clips of the so called da’awa that supposedly took them to such countries or the language they used during such purported da’awa. Their visit was simply social as they demonstrated in the pictures they posted online, it was simply an adventure and a tourism.
Bala Lau and Kabir Gombe have sued Mamu for his position in the two write up he circulated online and in DESERT HERALD newspaper. Some of their grievances as contained in their statement of claim in High Court 6, Kaduna, is the claim by Mamu that the faction of the JIBWIS under their monopoly is being controlled by few while it’s resources is being managed exclusively by a cabal under Lau. Lau is also challenging Mamu’s claim against them in court that they are using one Mu’azzam Ibrahim as a conduit-pipe to divert and mismanaged funds that are dedicated for the operations of the now moribund Manara Satellite Television Channel and how Lau approved several questionable payments that ended with virtually no result from their so called consultant, Mu’azzam Ibrahim. They are also challenging several claims in Mamu’s piece including diversion of employment slots specifically from Immigration Service to JIBWIS members precisely yan’agajis which Lau usually shared among his people in Lau village, allocation of Hajj seats to JIBWIS which they usually shared between themselves and diversion, mismanagement and lack of accountability of the donations they usually collect in secret etc.
In his reaction to the suit, Tukur Mamu told this reporter that, “Lau and Gombe have done exactly what I am expecting them to do. To initiate the legal battle first. Remember, I have earlier threatened to sue them but there was intervention from people I cannot say no to them even though I am convinced that doing so is in the interest of Islam and JIBWIS. We are prepared for them. We have instructed our lawyer, Barr. Sadau Garba to proceed forthwith with the case. I don’t have apology to anyone of them. They are only after leadership and what they are benefiting financially in JIBWIS. If not why are they as Islamic scholars we supposed emulate shamelessly fighting over leadership? We will not have regard for anyone that will flagrantly violate and ignore Allah’s specific instructions in the holy Qur’an about unity and uniting. Why did they factionalised JIBWIS into two, promote the division and frustrated every efforts to bring them together? Why are they not practicing what they are preaching? Is it legal even according to the constitution of JIBWIS to have two separate and feuding leadership all claiming same position and under one registration? Are Lau and Gombe truly accounting for the proceeds of the heights and skin we used to donate every year for the benefit of our religion or they are only manipulating our conscience? How many times have they audited the accounts of JIBWIS as prescribed by the law? Who is actually authorising withdrawals from their account and how many people are actually in control of finances? Who brought Mu’azzam Ibrahim to Manara and how much has he being paid so far for the job of ruining the television station? Didn’t we all know that Lau and Kabir Gombe are running Manara TV before they ruined it like their personal property and that only the two of them decides even among the neutral JIBWIS scholars that are far more educated than them who will feature and whose preaching will be aired in the television? We all know that they select only scholars that are blindly loyal to them to feature in the television even though Manara belongs to all stakeholders. Is it not true that they are diverting Hajj seats exclusively for themselves and their families instead of distributing same to JIBWIS members particularly yan’agajis and poor alaranmas that are sacrificing so much for Islam? Is it also not true that the likes of Lau, Gombe, Yakubu Musa etc are very much preoccupied in class struggle, competing among themselves who wears the most expensive clothes, types of jeeps in their intimidating convoys and the number of securities that followed them? The period of manipulating our conscience is over. The two izalas can unite if they are truly doing it for Allah’s sake. What they are doing is illegality and highly embarrassing to Islam. Just go and find out, what is the worth of Lau and Kabir Gombe twelve years back precisely before they started benefiting the proceeds of their highly corrupt leadership of the faction of JIBWIS? Where did they get the millions they are intimidating poor followers with? They will tell you that Lau has been a business man for long. Where did he get the millions as a working capital and the petrol stations he opened all within the same period? Where did Kabir Gombe got the money to open the expensive bakery in Kaduna and the houses he build? Didn’t they directly benefited from the Dasuki arms money which was supposed to be for the development of JIBWIS? Have they been accounting for the millions of money they used to solicit from prominent Muslim elites on behalf of JIBWIS? I really don’t think it is appropriate for the elites to donate a penny to so called leaders that cannot obey Allah’s straightforward instruction to unite, islamic scholars that believed in exploiting divisions to amaze wealth to the detriment of the religion. They should realise that as a human being or a manipulator, you can succeed in deceiving ignorant and blind followers but certainly you cannot deceive Allah, and it is only a matter of time”.