Personal Letter to Gimba Kakanda… And to My Unborn Daughter – Maryam! By M. M. Muhd
Give religion to an idiot, and you have created a monster.’ ‘Our people’s cultural and religious ignorance is that complicated.’ These were some of the statements in your recent piece, “Letter to my unborn daughter.” The above quotations sound like self-indictment to me.
It was your latest piece, “Letter to my unborn daughter” (http://mobile.saharareporters.com/article/letter-my-unborn-daughter-gimba-kakanda) that compelled me to write this letter to you. I decided to make it public because I have seen some rejoinders to that piece. Some of the authors of those rejoinders don’t know the other you- activist! As well, I realised some of them were too harsh on you. This may likely give them an insight about Kakanda. The much debated clause was not about marriage, rather, the age of renunciation of citizenship… The (sub) section has been there since 1979. But your piece didn’t talk about any of the above. Your grouse was why Sen. Yerima would cited Islamic reason to retain a clause that has been in existence and on why women are subjugated. You also highlighted why Child marriage is ancient and should be rejected; your reason- it was all a cultural and religious conspiracies championed by insecure men. But your article only gave me either of these impressions: that you’re less conversant with the constitution, even, most of us are culpable of that; that you have a buried bitter-hatred for Yerima which is likely because of his marriage to a 13 now 18 year old Egyptian lady who is now a mother and student; Perhaps, your grouse has to do with why he had mentioned Islam there.
I won’t bother talking about Sen. Yerima. My focus is on the content of that article and the message (which I perceive to be wrong) that you are passing. After all, it is not for only your daughter.
I know you love Common Sense. It is vivid, even your blog site description says; ‘Flips of Common sense.’ But one thing which is good about common sense is its close relationship with religion. Be it Christianity or Islam! If you talk about common sense, I think Religion is the loch from which immeasurable amount of it can be garnered from. Religion and common sense go hand in hand. Except in some extremely rare occasions where common sense of man bows to divine sense. Both Islam and Christianity for example prohibit Alcoholism. Why? It makes one go out his/her sense, thereby, making him or her vulnerable to doing things out of order. That’s common sense!
In your letter, you sought for an apology from our unborn darling daughter for allowing chauvinists train your mind into agreeing that women are inferior, created from our (men) ribs to be marital slaves. Well, those chauvinists are wicked if indeed that’s what they trained you into, or probably, you (we) all got it wrong. Both the Qur’an and the Bible are explicit on this issue. In the Book of Genesis, from chapter one through five, the position of the bible is clear; Eve was created to be Adam’s COMPANION.
Qur’an also made some points as thus: ‘It is God who has made from your species your MATE. (Q16:72). ‘It is He who created you from a single person, and made his MATE of like nature, in order that he might dwell with her in LOVE. (Q7:189) (Emphasis all mine). Indeed, until recently, you did not know all these if we are to go by your assertion. This has sharply contradicted your claim; ‘… WHEN SOME OF US WERE IN DECENT CLASSROOMS STUDYING THE IDEAL ISLAMIC LITERATURE UNDER SCHOLARS OF PIETY AND REPUTE.’ (Emphasis mine). How could you have allowed chauvinists instead those scholars of piety and repute to have taken control of your mind… until recently? By the way, who are those chauvinists? The above statement got me thinking, seriously! I want to be sure that you can tell apart pornography and bible written in Arabic text from a religious text; I sincerely want to believe you can. After all, you learned ideal Islam under scholars of piety and repute!
It seems you have spent so much time on English literatures that you are confusing some of the ideologies there in with what Islam is. Wrong! Islam as a religion is “All or None,” either you accept it wholly or you leave it, there is nothing like painstaking application of modern wisdom.
But if I am to judge you base on the above statement, I will either say your letter is out for mischief and/or a publicity stunt or rather, those scholars are not of piety and repute enough or altogether. But who am I to judge.
Mind you, Islamic school is one which one never graduate. Even the informed Ulamas see themselves as student. Sheikh Jafar of blessed memory, his soul RIP, always calls himself a student. Seriously, that piece threw you under the sun when you were trying to tell your tale from under a shade. We should all go back to school, seriously!
You lamented on how you had unfairly antagonised feminists whose misery you now understand. In your words: ‘ I had dismissed their Gender equality campaign….’ The problem with all these gender equality trash is, even the feminists do not know and are not likely to know that man and woman were/are/will never be equal. NEVER! They failed woefully to see that woman’s status is SUPERIOR than that of the man. In Islam, a child’s paradise is under his mother; a wife who is considered to be a Queen. The Almighty has made it mandatory that the husband caters for all her needs (Education inclusive), I mean ALL. Which in turn, she could have enough time to train the child, just as you admitted: ‘ … It is the same women, and not men, that shape the earliest education of every child’. Common sense!
All great men and women have passed through woman’s womb except Adam (AS). But God, in His infinite mercy made nature to partition male and female in such a way that there would be division of labour: Man with masculinity, woman with beauty and fragility. Man’s ample ‘power’ to cater for her needs. Common sense! Alas, Man (in this case, Woman) threw away that dignity, in her bid to be equal to man she decided to lower her dignity; she wants to work and earn (which is of course, permissible in Islam. Prophet Muhammad SAW first wife, Khadijat RA was a business woman of repute she was older than him by far) but the difference is; women today stoop so low by pandering in all sort of trade even those that makes mockery of their woman-hood. Something Religion firmly guards against..Sad! The price we are paying for this is huge; the dwindling morality we are witnessing now. A child whose earliest education rest on the mother – you also concurred to this – is left in the hands of Baby-sitters (another woman – of course. We can’t run away from nature, even though, you didn’t bother wasting your ink on this injustice that’s been meted on our young girls even when we all know they are the most susceptible to all sort of abuses) who is either afraid or cannot shape the child for any possible reason. Child labour!
Have you taken time to see how our musicians use our ‘sacred’ women in their musical clips? Pathetic! Women now worship those celebrities. If you doubt me, take any average Nigerian girl to any of their concerts.
In your concern for Woman’s dignity, you took time in of your previous article; Abuja Survivalism (http://mobile.saharareporters.com/article/abuja-survivalism-gimba-kakanda), to tell us about your friend and a die-hard unemployed lady. Let me quote some parts from that masterpiece: “She used to be a good girl, one of the most decent ones I ever met” your friend recalled. Luckily, you didn’t stop there, you went further to tell how after her NYSC service year had elapsed, and been booted out by her friend, she went back to your friend; she even forced her way and stripped! Subhanallah! You also mentioned other saddening words like “Prostitution,” “Abuja Marriage,” and “stooping below moral lines….” etc. In short, woman’s dignity now has a price tag- a cheap price. Oh Lord! These are exactly what our religions are against. Our daughters must never face this. What do you think? We must continue pestering the Government!
My brother, Let me share this small gist with you. Before I left to a far place for my secondary school, I was ten approximately. There’s this girl, her father is still a Director at one of the Nigeria’s biggest-revenue-generating establishment. We use to play as kids. She was my friend’s cousin. And she was my darling then. After my six year in Borno, when I came back, I was not able to recognise her. She had also finished her secondary school from one of the best schools in Minna. Because she spent just five years instead of six, we graduated the same year. Her physique was ready for marriage in all definition of readiness — Androgen surge, if you ask me! Wallahi, she got married at 15. She is a mother now and a 300L student of University of Abuja. She would have graduated if not for these incessant strikes. She is on facebook too. She is a definition of what a happy lady is. That is why I could not fathom when you said; “I can’t watch a little girl not only denied privileges but constitutionally dehumanized.” The marriage didn’t impede on her Education acquisition at all, rather it provided her with social security. Apparently, this won’t stop her from finding a space in our over saturated labour market. You could have talked in this direction but you didn’t. Even the Yerima that has generated the whole saga is giving out his daughter who is just 16 soon. She is an undergraduate too. Do you think he is wrong on that decision? I think not.
By the way, all those legislation are most often than none, a paper work. Back in 2010, I was privilege to be part of a Medical caravan organised by the medical student of ABU, Zaria to a village that is very ‘very’ near to Zaria. To God, we didn’t spend more than an hour on a 30km/hr speed before reaching that village. It will shock you to know that there was NO presence of Government in that village. NONE! The most worrisome part is; they are very close to Zaria. No Electricity, no pipe borne water, Poor hygiene… name them. I wonder how that legislation is going to affect them. If a village that is that close to Zaria- a town that’s hosting ABU, the largest university in Nigeria and Aviation school amongst other national establishment could be lacking in basic amenities and presence of Government, I wonder what other longer distanced villages will look like. I just wonder!
I think the challenges of 21st century don’t require any non existing wisdom. All we need is good governance of which you are an advocate of, where proper Education and health facilities would be available. Believe me, these issues would become non-issue.
Above all, if we can all go back to the true teachings of our religions (Christianity and Islam). Our problems would take care of themselves. That’s all!
It is as you said; “The borderline between adherence to religion and fanaticism is thin.” So is the line between little learning and misleading people. Both are dangerous!
If there is one thing the latest constitution amendment melee taught, it is that: even you whom I hold in high esteem don’t even know the constitution that much. It will do us well, if we all go back and devote some times to it. That you don’t like early (child) marriage is a different thing from taking a stand for Islam. One can always marry an older woman, after all, our amiable Prophet, Muhammad SAW had an older wife – khadijat RA!
You see your latest piece has inspired me to also write a letter to my sweetheart. Unlike you, I even have a preferred name for her; Maryam we shall call her. I have always loved to have a baby girl as my first child. You see, you never fail to inspire me!
Permit me to attach it to this letter.
It goes thus:
This name, I pray and hope your mother consent to it, as I intend to call you with this name. Who knows, it might have some attributed effect of the original owner on you. I pray it does! Just like our President. Baby, our President’s name is Goodluck. I am dead sure his name had something to do with his emergence as our President. When you come, I promise to tell you how he came on board miraculously.
You see dear, we live in a world where people no longer take care of their children as it is required of them by God. Even when they know that it would be asked of them in the hereafter. They don’t care. We have confused ourselves here all in the name of civilisation. Can you imagine? People have forgotten about the hereafter we were warned about. All they care for is money and fame- at all cost!
Feminists are also championing a cause to see women are freed from non-existent shackles of men. They have forgotten that even the history has shown how a lot of emperor’s decisions were never theirs. It was those of their wives which have changed the courses of history.
Ladies do all sort of things just to attain some level of vanity. The world really, is crazy!
I want you to know that as a lady, your status is SUPERIOR than that of a man. But you know what sweety? Humble yourself and submit yourself to your husband because Allah SWT said so. That is your biggest assignment on earth.
Accept corrections, respect your elders and true friends are rare and endangered these days, once you identify any, hold them tight! That’s what your grand dad told me.
While growing up, I have a strong passion for writing and activism, even though, I was trained a medical scientist, so I had to seek for guidance. Guess what? It was Uncle Gimba Kakanda I first came across. Probably, it’s because we come from the same state. Even Our tribe can be traced to the same origin. He’s Kakanda and I am Nupe. He’s such a fine man. Also, you should know about his strides in activism. He deserves accolades. Also, if you are able to read this, you owe him some respects. Besides, whenever his daughter (your cousin) arrives, I pray she arrives first, I want you to see her as your blood sister.
I will make sure I take all the roles of your mother in the first trimester, so that you won’t feel any stress and pressure because I know that’s when your beautiful inner and outer features would be made by the Almighty himself. I can’t afford to let you suffer, lest it affect your God-given features.
I will give you out in marriage anytime you want, but please it will gladdens my heart in no small way if you identify your hubby earlier enough for it is the wrath of Allah that I don’t want to incur since any sin you commit under my roof, I will also have a share of it. Beside, Marriage in time won’t stop you from achieving anything you want to become. I mean ANYTHING. I promise to tell you more about Aunt Hadiza, she’s a perfect example. Rather, it will serve as a social security for you because our institution of learning is highly infested with persons – old and young – whose aim is to take advantage of girls. Furthermore, Allah in his infinite mercy made provision for Menopause. Guess what? It only occurs in females. Also, do you know that it has been confirmed in genetics that children born to older mother are ten times likely to be born with congenital abnormalities when compared to those of younger mother? It has been proven! Sweetheart, please make us proud.
You will be able to resist all tempting temptations which are the order of the day now, as long as you follow my (our) teaching. I promise to train you in an Islamic way. No man, I repeat, no man can molest you if you abide by those teachings. Never!
Dear, no matter the glory, the fame, if that which you do does not give you comfort while you are alone in your bed at night, just know that it is not worth it.
You should also know that good and bad people cut across all religion, identify the good one and fraternize only with them.
Please, when it’s time for you to grace this world, come out your mother gently and quickly as possible, who knows your mother might be less than 18 at the time of your delivery. Don’t let people laugh at us!
Your loving Dad!
PS: Dear Brother, kindly amplify ASUU’s demand for a better funding for our higher institutions. As an Anatomist, I am having sleepless night over some ideas floating in my head. The idea has some connections with homosexuality. I want to look into the brains of homosexuals. I want to also see their prevalence in Rural and Urban area and other things. I think we can explore an extensive study on that but we don’t have equipment like Positron Emission Tomography scanners, electronic microscopes, Magnetic Resonance Imagine, etc.
I know, you least expect this from me. But take this in good heart. I also know some of your friends are likely going to massage your ego by making you feel insulted, forget them for I did this piece out of sheer love. Also, don’t mind the grammatical errors, as I only hurriedly put this together – on my phone!
May Allah forgive us all, Ameen!
Ramadan Mubaraq, brother.
By M. M. Muh’d
NYSC Corps Member,
Faculty of Medicine,
Kaduna State University
@Babsymx (on twitter).