By Furera Bagel, PhD 

Who remembers those screen savers we used to have on our phones? Well, there was a time I got an interesting one that said, “ I Didn’t Ask To Be A Muslim, I Just Got Lucky”.

One day while serving at a girl’s school during my NYSC, one of my closest friends came to our staff room and said he wanted to talk.

It turned out he wanted to advise me about how inappropriate my secret saver was and how it had generated a lot of controversy among the staff and people discussing it in the main staff room.

I asked why? What’s the problem? He said well, a group of female teachers called him and ask why I am denigrating Islam! That I have something on my phone that said I hate Islam and don’t want to be a Muslim!

I said but you are my friend, you have seen my phone. He said he didn’t pay much attention but that was what he was told.

It then occurred to me that even though I haven’t given those people any reason to think otherwise, they have probably taken me for a non-Muslim, and perhaps one or two of them have seen the, “I didn’t ask to be Muslim” on my phone and became outraged that a non-Muslim would dare to use such in their ‘Islamic State’.

I wasn’t naive so I knew how dangerous that got, and so I sat down with my friend who was a son- of -the -soil, brought out and showed him my phone, and then said to him, “ are you are Muslim?” He said yes.

My second question to him was, “ Did you have to go to Allah yourself and asked to be made a Muslim?”, and when he answered with no, I asked if he considered himself lucky to be a Muslim since it wasn’t by his design he became one, and he said of course he did.

Then I said to him, “Now you should go to that staff room and school those women the way I just did you, for I didn’t leave my hometown and family to come here and to be lynched by some ignorant busybodies!”

Well, my friend was very embarrassed but he did his job and Alhamdulillah a disaster was averted.

That is why I am thinking that if I, a Muslim was scared for her life for being misunderstood, why would a Christian who knew how people here behave when such things happen to be reckless enough to utter those words to already enraged youths baying for blood?

Now I am not in any way blaming the victim nor am I exonerating those blackhearted murderers of blame, but we have to admit that she was reckless in her statement which unfortunately led to her gruesome murder.

It is very sad and unfortunate that she gave them a reason to perpetrate their crime. A reason they ignorantly feel justified in what they did to that poor girl!

Whatever happened to mercy, love, and forgiveness?

If they are really the good Muslims they claim to be then they’ll Know that by killing her they have robbed her of many things including the chance of becoming a Muslim in later years! For how many people insulted, fought, and even physically harmed the prophet who later became champions of Islam?

Therefore they have committed a crime against Allah and they would be judged accordingly, but before then I pray they get convicted of their crimes so that they can start serving their penance here on earth.

May the soul of Deborah Rest In Peace and may God give her family the fortitude to bear this loss.

I also pray for the return of peace to our dear country, but a lot needs to be done to achieve that.

May Allah help us!

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