The Governor of Kaduna State, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, had a rather bizarre interview on ChannelsTV where he told the host, Maupe Ogun, that she might need more lessons in the English Language.
El-Rufai was reacting to a statement credited to him about the Shiites leader, Ibrahim El-Zakzaky.
He had said of El-Zakzaky, “I know the animal I am dealing with”, a comment which Maupe said may be considered as denigrating.
The governor however defended his metaphor by saying: “It’s an idiom I don’t mean that El-Zakzaky is an animal or anything. You know what I am talking about, if you don’t know then maybe you need more lessons in English Language it is as simple as that.”
But Maupe was not having it, and she insisted that El-Rufai use another word rather than “animal” to which the governor replied with a smile “I know the person I’m dealing with.”
Now see El-Rufai taking his statement back with a smile. If it was an idiom, Maupe won't make him do it. pic.twitter.com/WYQsT2TbCX
— Samuel Dánilọ́lá (@samueldanilola) October 29, 2018
El-Rufai had said that his problem with the El-Zakzaky’s movement, was their refusal to acknowledge constituted authority.
“Shi’ites are citizens of Nigeria and they are entitled to practice their religion, there is no problem with that. Those protesting for the release of El-Zakzaky are not necessarily Shias, they are members of El-Zakzaky’s movement.
“In Kaduna, there are two other Shi’ite organizations that don’t protest, they don’t block highways, they recognize the President of Nigeria and me as the governor of the state and we don’t have a problem with them.
“The one that we have problems with is the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, IMN, headed by El-Zakzaky, they don’t recognise the President of Nigeria as sovereign, they don’t recognize me as governor. Their allegiance is to another country and their objective is to turn Nigeria into an Islamic republic.
“They are against the state, never recognized the Nigerian constitution.
“I know El-Zakzaky personally, we were both students at the Amadu Bello University in Zaria, we were both active in the Muslim Students Society so I know the animal I’m dealing with. Many of those making comments on this issue don’t know the history, I was in ABU when El-Zakzaky was dismissed, I know him.”
On outlawing the group, El-Rufai said;
“Outlawing them is the only solution we see and anybody with a different view should tell us.”
Shiites were recently in the news after they reportedly lost 50 members during a clash with soldiers in Abuja Sunday.