ISLAMIC BANKING: DIALOGUE IS THE ANSWER -CLERIC
A top cleric, has called on the Nigeria Inter-Regions Council (NIREC) to intervene and mediate in the ongoing controversy about Islamic banking by initiating dialogue between the Christian and Muslim leaders.
According to Special Apostle Israel S. Akinadewo, Minister in Charge of Motailatu Church Cherubim and Seraphim Worldwide (Sanctuary Parish), Alakuko, Lagos, the issue of Islamic banking has moved toward a dangerous dimension and only a genuine dialogue between the two religious bodies could resolve it.
In a press statement, in Lagos at the weekend, and signed by Special Apostle Akinadewo, the cleric emphasised: 'It is better for the Christian and Muslim leaders to dialogue on the Islamic banking palaver than to be beating the drums of war'.
The radio and telecast pastor and chartered accountant and fellow of ICAN by professional training, said that presently, the Nigerian small and medium-scale businesses and enterprises needed a free-interest banking that would boost such businesses and in turn elevate the economy of the nation.
'So, any nation that neglects the small and medium-scale businesses that form the largest portion of the population does so at its own pevil. But these small businesses could not meet the requirements of accessing loans from the conventional banks, hence the need for interest-free banking.
'But the situation now on ground, is that the Muslims see the Islamic banking as their own baby that should serve their interest alone. That is the problem associated with Islamic banking which the Christians had foreseen,' Special Apostle Akinadewo noted, stressing that by naming it Islamic bank, Nigeria was already being divided or polarized on religious sections which should not be so.
He suggested that a neutral name be given to the bank, while the composition of its board of directors should be based on financial expertise, warning that a nation like Nigeria could not withstand the test of breaking-up or destabilization.
The cleric said that Nigerians since 1914 of Nigeria's amalgamation, had lived together in peace and love for almost 100 years now, and nobody should do anything that would dissolve that marriage, advising that there was big strength in our diversity.
On Boko Haram, Special Apostle Akinadewo, said if the people behind the sect are saying that western education is evil and they are using bomb, cars and other things made by the Western countries, then they were acting on ignorance or their belief and action had political undertone which needs to be examined by the government and solution found for it.