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General Board / WAEC results released ... 83% of students failed
« on: September 27, 2008, 08:50:20 AM »

Assalamu alaikum,

I am speachless....

Punch newspaper:

Thisday newspaper:

If only we all could think like this...

WASHINGTON, 27 May 2008 — Here's a story of a man with guts... and a big heart. The recipient of one of Israel's most prestigious prizes donated his $33,333 portion of the shared award yesterday to a Palestinian university and an Israeli human rights group that tries to ease Israeli travel restrictions on Palestinian students.

US mathematician David Mumford, a professor at Brown University's Applied Mathematics Division, was co-winner of the Wolf Prize on Sunday for his groundbreaking theoretical work in algebraic geometry. Mumford announced yesterday he would donate his prize money to Bir-Zeit University in the West Bank and to Gisha, an Israeli lobby that works to help Palestinian students travel to their places of study.

He received the award at a ceremony on Sunday from Prime Minister Ehud Olmert at the Knesset in recognition of his groundbreaking theoretical work "on algebraic surfaces; on geometric invariant theory; and for laying the foundations of the modern algebraic theory of the moduli space of curves and theta functions."

"Mathematics in Israel flourishes today on this high international plane. Its lifeblood is the free exchange of ideas with scholars visiting, teaching, learning from each other, traveling everywhere in the world," Mumford, professor emeritus at Brown University and Harvard University, said in a statement. "But this is not so in occupied Palestine where education struggles to continue and travel is greatly limited."

He added: "Access to education determines how the next generation of Palestinians will grow up, specifically whether potential mathematicians will have the opportunity to join the international community."

Israel has withstood international criticism of its closures on the Gaza Strip and West Bank, saying they aim to prevent terrorist infiltrations. But these closures make it next to impossible for many Palestinian students to travel to their schools.

"Education for people in the occupied territories gives them a future. The alternative is chaos," Mumford said, adding that his decision was not aimed at Israel. "I have tremendous regard for Israel, which is without a doubt a major force in the mathematics world. But unfortunately, the Palestinians cannot take part in this prosperity."

"I decided to donate my share of the Wolf Prize to enable the academic community in occupied Palestine to survive and thrive," he told Israeli daily Haaretz.

Islam / The art of "ruling", the advice of Hasan Al-Basri
« on: April 19, 2008, 12:26:50 PM »
Assalamu alaikum,

I came across this rather beautiful and highly thought provoking advice given by a prominent scholar and zahid par excellence, Sheikh Hasan-al-Basri to one of the best rulers of all time, Umar bin Abdulaziz (Not Umar ibn-Khattab). Before I lay it on you, I may have to give a little bit of a pre-amble.
Umar ibn Abdulaziz was a highly pious and exceptionally just ruler who had knowledge and insight, like none of the rulers of his time. He was governor of the Madina area while aged 33 and at 37, was khalif of the Islamic empire. He was referred to (first by Ahmad ibn Hambal) by all scholars, as the fifth rightly guided Khalif. When appointed, this wise young ruler (whom I thoroughly adore), wrote to Sheikh Hasan Al-basri asking him for advice. Now before you start thinking what does this have to do with me, think again!!

Every one of us presides over someone in one form or another, either at home, in school, at work, or in elected or (in the case of some Nigerian politicians) selected positions. Whether Muslim or non-muslim is completely irrelevant, every single person who you are responsible for deserves to be treated fairly, with wisdom and compassion aimed at giving them the best out of this life. I have written this to remind myself first and foremost and then to remind us all of the responsibility we have and the obligations of those over whom we preside. The fact that your leader (or boss, or husband or parent) does not reciprocate such justice is irrelevant and should never hinder you from being the best you can be. Please think about these words and rethink the way you work and divulge your responsibility over others.

Enough from me, here are the words from the wise:

When Umar ibn Abdul Aziz became caliph, he wrote to Hasan al-Basree to write him the description of a just Imaam, and Hasan wrote him:

"Know, commander of Believers, that God has made the just Imaam the prop of every learner, the straightener of every deviator, the reform of all corrupt, the strength of all weak, the justice of all oppressed, the refuge of all who are pitied. The just Imaam, O commander of Believers, is like a herdsman, solicitous for the camels he tends, desiring the sweetest pasture for them, driving them away from any dangerous grazing place, protecting them from beast of prey, and shielding them from the harms of heat and cold.

And the just Imaam, commander of the Believers, is the guardian of the orphan, and the treasury of the poor, fostering the little ones, and providing for the old ones. The just Imaam, Commander of Believers, is as the heart is to the members of the body: all are sound when it is sound, and all corrupt when it is corrupt. The just Imaam, commander of Believers, stands intermediary between God and His servants; hearkening to God's words, and making them hearken; looking to God, and making them to look; obedient to God and making them obedient.

Therefore commander of Believers, act not in what God the Mighty and Glorious has given you like a slave whose master has trusted him and given into his care his wealth and his children, who then squanders his master's wealth and drives his children away, and reduces the family to poverty and scatters their fortune.

And know, commander of the Believers, that God has sent down (His prescription for) the legal punishments to chide (people) away from wickedness and immorality. How shall it be, if he who administers them, deserves them? And He sent down (the law of) retaliation to give life to His servants. How will it be if the man who gives them retaliation puts them to death?

Remember, O commander of Believers, death and what comes after it, and how few partisans you have there, or aids against it. Therefore make provision for death, and against the greater terror which follows it.

And know, commander of Believers, that there is a place for you other than the place where you are now. Your stay there will be long, and your friends will be separated from you. You will be committed to its depths as a completely solitary individual. Therefore, make provision of what you may take with you - 'On the day when a man shall flee from his brother, his mother, his father, his consort, his sons' (80:36), and remember, commander of Believers, 'When that which is within the tombs shall be cast out, and that which is in the breasts exposed' (100:9), when secrets are made manifest, and 'The record leaves nothing, great or small, without numbering it' (18:49).

And now, commander of Believers, you are in leisure, before the dissolution of death and the serving of hope. Therefore commander of Believers, do not give judgement among the servants of God according to the usages of pre Islamic period (bi hokum al jahilan), and do not travel the way of transgressors with them, and do not put the arrogant in power over the humble, for such will not watch over any believer or the protected religious groups (dhimma), so that you will have to acknowledge your own faults and the faults of others, and bear your own burdens and other burdens too. Do not be deceived by those who would lead a pleasant life by causing damage to you, and eat the good things of this world by causing the good things of your afterlife to disappear. And do not regard your power in this world, but look toward what will be your power when you are captive in the bonds of death, and forced to stand before God Most High in the company of the angels and prophets and apostles, and faces are turned to the Living and Self-subsisting One.

And I, O commander of Believers, though I have not attained by my rigors what prudent men attained before me, yet have not desisted from offering you solicitude and advice, sending you my letter as a doctor causes a beloved friend to drink disagreeable medicine, because he hopes to offer him health and soundness.

And peace be upon thee, O commander of the Believers, and the mercy of God, and His blessing."

[Source: Williams (1971), Themes of Islamic Civilisation, from, Al Iqd al Farid, Cairo, 1953

General Board / Dokubo, Okah and the Niger delta struggle
« on: March 08, 2008, 08:04:50 PM »
I have always wondered who Henry Okah was, and whether he was a freedom fighter, common criminal or a merchant of death (arms dealer). I found this rather detailed interview given by Ansari describing the persona of Henry Okah and his influence on the Niger delta struggle. Please read and discuss...,

Borno-Yobe-Adamawa / Education in Yobe State
« on: December 14, 2007, 11:36:47 PM »
As-salam alaikum to everyone and eid Mubarak,
Along with some colleagues, we are in advanced discussions and are contemplating drawing up a detailed proposal (or a blue print) for a masterplan on educational development for Yobe State, including the desired academic standards, skills base and competencies required, governance policies, sustainable funding mechanisms, obtaining and maintaining a quality teacher base, correct implementation procedures, desired societal impact and benefits, a suitable core curriculum and subsequent independent supervision, along with the neccessary laws and regulatory bodies (both local and international) to ensure its standards continue to develop in the long term.

However, (right from the early days) we are hampered by insufficient statistics on the number of schools available at the moment. Does anyone have "verifiable" statistics on the number of primary and secondary schools in the state and their distribution across the state? If not, does anyone know where I could get such information online?

General Board / Chief Sunday Awoniyi.. Statemen mourn you..
« on: November 30, 2007, 08:56:21 AM »
Considering he was neither royalty, nor was he a major political office holder, en uwa, Lets pay tribute to the most Phenomenal Statesman Arewa has seen. Allah ya jikan Musulmi..

General Board / Response to Gaius
« on: October 16, 2007, 01:22:50 PM »
Gaius, while I have to say, I object to certain words you use, I do understand your position and without a shred of doubt I am wholeheartedly in total agreement with you in this regard.

Let me clarify that I am an active Muslim from the North East, but Islam teaches me justice and fairness and therefore, I am an unequivocal advocate of justice and the rule of law and in both issues with regards this issue you are right and we have again been found wanting.

Let me explain something, under Islamic Law, if indeed the cartoon was drawn what should be done is the “THE PERSON(S) WHO DREW IT SHOULD BE ARRESTED AND PROSECUTED THROUGH THE APPROPRIATE CHANNELS”, whatever judgement is passed, it is for the person(s) convicted, the fate should not be shared by all and sundry just because they belong to the same religion. And this is even when the cartoon has been seen. In this case, it wasn’t even seen. Haba Muslims!!

The innocent people killed in the street what did they do? The kids attacked in the school what did they do? And yet when America arrests an innocent Muslim man accusing him of terrorism we cry foul? Why? If we attack all Christians for the supposed crime of another, isn’t America right to attack us all for the crime of one?  Subhanallah!!

This lawlessness must stop and cannot be condoned anymore. All the muslim students who partook and instigated this should be punished and the government must come out to take a stance on this issue once and for all. For how long will innocent people continue to die because we are afraid to confront the problems of the North?. We do have problems, serious ones and I worry very much for the future.


This was neither a war, nor a quarrel, just a demonstration of anger and look at what we do. We didn’t even stop there, we proceeded to loot and destroy their property. What manner of Islam is this, I can’t help but wonder.

These people should be arrested and persecuted, the fact that they are Muslim northerners like myself will not stop me from stating the obvious truth here, We are wrong, we need to stop this nonsense and we need to pay all appropriate compensation to those we have wronged if not…. Then God will surely and I dare say, quite rightly punish us, and compensate those who are wronged.

Enough is enough, our society is getting more and more rotten by the day, we cant sit back and do nothing forever. This is too much.

Although this may mean nothing, as the deed has been done, Gaius, please accept my most sincere apologies on behalf of sincere Muslim Northerners and in redefining our future, we will try to make things right as best we can.

While we do not completely say the other communities living in the North are blame free, in this regard, we are blame worthy and we accept.

Courage is not to stand tall always and refuse to bend, but to accept your faults and make yourself a better person, and emerging stronger. That is what as a community we seem to have conveniently forgotten.

Is there a solution to such unguarded action? Yes there is. Though without a doubt it is a long and difficult one, we have to solve our problems. We have to confront and accept the fact that we are wrong and confront our derelict institutions that have allowed such unguarded actions to take place. We the youth of the North have to stand, rescue, guide and defend our society, and take it to where it needs to be.

A simple thought, what if the cartoon was drawn by a “SOOTHSAYER”? who would we attack? What of the innocent Christians killed?... May God guide us..

Gaius, please watch your words, so our brothers don’t take offence and so we can conveniently discuss these issues, also, so Admin doesn’t block us out.

General Board / Nigeria is not unique
« on: August 08, 2007, 11:12:11 AM »
I always thought Nigeria was unique with it's problems. Aparantly not!! I recently came across this BBC article about another country whose problems echo our (or is probably even worse). What I'm most impressed about the article is that it hits the nail exactly on the head... With the kind of seasoned thiners on this site, lets see if we can develop a model solution for Nigeria......

here's the article,

General Board / OIL IN GHANA!!! Blessing or curse?
« on: June 21, 2007, 01:37:23 AM »
As-salam alaikum,
Hurray for Ghana!!! As i'm sure everyone is now aware, Ghana has just struck oil. This could potentially boost its economy and if managed properly, make Ghana Africa's shining star. However a slight problem may exist. I recently read an insightful article describing the state of African (and some south american) oil producing nations. very very few countries have been able to harness the benefits of oil, instead (according to the article) nearly all relatively stable countries have plunged into one form of conflict or the other after the discovery of oil. and even where conflict is averted, curroption, mismanagement and inefficiency has meant that these countries never take economic benefit of the new found oil wealth.

I put forth a question therefore, considering the plight of Nigeria and other African and south american countries, is Oil a blessing or a curse? What does this therefore mean for the new kid on the block, Ghana? Do we rejoice or do we weep?

General Board / Private Universities approved.. where are we???
« on: May 03, 2007, 07:45:21 AM »
As-salam alaikum,
The federal government has just given approval for the setting up of more private universities across the country.. they are ..

Ogbong University, Akwa Ibom State;
Caleb University, Ikosi, Lagos State;
Fountain University, Osogbo, Osun State;
Tansian University, Umunya, Anambra State;
Veritas University in the Federal Capital Territory,
Wesley University of Science and Technology, Ondo State.
Western University, Oghara, Delta State.

Ikon Allah.. all these Universities are in the south ... closest to the north is FCT, haba jama'a..!!!!...

Jama'a I am deeply saddened.... despite the fact that we are the most educationally handicapped part of the country, and our rather dis-organised private sector is virtually small and medium scale, we dont seem to be making any efforts to fix these....Jama'a where are we?. How do we sort out our very many problems?.... Ina Arewa? ... What future lies for us?.. Do we keep waiting for a Sardauna type leader?...What do we do?....

Allah ya taimake mu....

General Board / World's oldest college graduate..
« on: April 27, 2007, 06:02:45 AM »
By CARL MANNING, Associated Press Writer
Thu Apr 26, 7:52 PM ET

HAYS, Kansas - When 95-year-old Nola Ochs graduates next month, she will be the world's oldest college graduate. The record Ochs will break, according to Guinness World Records, belongs to Mozelle Richardson, who at age 90 in 2004 received a journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma.

On Thursday, the Kansas Legislature honored Ochs with praise and standing ovations.

Ochs did not plan to break records. She started taking classes at a community college after her husband of 39 years, Vernon, died in 1972. A class here and there over the years, and she was close to having enough hours for an undergraduate degree.

Last fall, Ochs moved the 100 miles from her farm to an apartment at Fort Hays State University to complete the final 30 hours to get a general studies degree with an emphasis on history.

An added joy for Ochs is that her 21-year-old granddaughter, Alexandra Ochs, will graduate with her.

"How many people my age have a chance to hang out with their grandmothers? She's really accepted by the other students," Alexandra said. "They enjoy her, but probably not as much as I do."

With her white hair pulled into a bun, Nola Ochs walks purposely down hallways to classes with her books in a cloth tote bag. Students nod and smile; she is described as witty, charming and down to earth.

"Everybody has accepted me, and I feel just like another student," she said. "The students respect me."

She added: "I don't dwell on my age. It might limit what I can do. As long as I have my mind and health, it's just a number."

Todd Leahy, history department chairman, wondered at first if Ochs could keep up with the other students. After her second week, all doubts were gone. Now he wants to record oral histories with her after she graduates.

"I can tell them about it, but to have Nola in class adds a dynamic that can't be topped," Leahy said. "It's a firsthand perspective you seldom get."

For instance, Ochs offered recollections of the 1930s Dust Bowl — skies so dark that lamps were lit during the day, and wet sheets placed over windows to keep out dust that sounded like pelting sleet hitting the house.

"We should all be so lucky and do such amazing things. Her achievement challenges us all to reach for our own goals and dreams," said Tom Nelson, chief operating officer of the American Association of Retired Persons.

Ochs is proudest of being the matriarch of a family that includes three sons — a fourth died in 1995 — along with 13 grandchildren and 15 great grandchildren.

After graduation, Ochs might travel or take some more classes at a community college. And after that, "I'm going to seek employment on a cruise ship as a storyteller," she said, smiling.

Islam / What is Islam's alternative to democracy?
« on: April 25, 2007, 10:23:45 AM »
Assalamu alaikum,
I happen to be present in a series of lectures in which a few Ulama continually declared democracy as Kufr.. It was not an isolated insidence and in further consultation with others like myself, who are not so learned, that seemed to be a recurrent theme. They had bits of justification which honestly I dont entirely agree with, but it may be that it is I who does not truely understand. Therefore I am seeking clarification from anyone who might know. Is democracy haram in Islam?.. If so dear brothers and sisters.. WHAT IS ISLAM'S ALTERNATIVE TO DEMOCRACY?. and how can it be implemented considering the complex nature of Nigeria and indeed, the world today?

General Board / When Euope was ruled by Muslims
« on: April 20, 2007, 11:27:36 PM »
Hi all, Assalamu alaikum,

This is a rather facinating documentary i came across titled "WHEN THE MUSLIMS RULED EUROPE"..  Its a rather interesting documentary and has a lot of salient issues worth discussing .. please EVERYONE have a look and pass your comments and let's discuss ... we stand to learn greatly from each other.. even from those who criticise us the most...




General Board / Islamic History and Architecture
« on: April 17, 2007, 01:08:09 AM »
Assalamu alaikum,

The UK's channel 4 sometime last year showed a very interesting documentary on the development of Islamic Architecture. This is an interesting eye opener particularly for those GENUINELY interested in learning about Islam and Islamic history..

I have put this here particularly so that some basic questions can be answered for those seeking answers. If for any reason (for which i doubt if there would be any) you find this offensive, my apologies.

This is the link,

Warning..!!! .. If you have any preconcieved notions and therefore do not watch this with an open mind, you stand to miss the point and to be completely disappointed.. 

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