The raging war within the deadly Boko Haram sect has continued unabated with the newly appointed leader, Abu Musab al-Barnawi, leading a splinter group that is set to confront the main faction in a battle of wits. The former spokesman, who is being backed by the Islamic State (ISIS), had issued an audiotape yesterday denouncing the supposedly deposed leader, Abubakar Shekau, who had earlier issued his own audiotape on Thursday, claiming to be in charge of the deadly group. Shekau had responded to the announcement of al-Barnawi as Boko Haram leader, calling some of his followers traitors.
Al-Barnawi in his new speech is accusing Shekau of deviating from the original cause of the group and turned it to a personal agenda. Shekau had said that he remained strong and in control of the group. “We still exist as a group and we shall not deviate from the Holy Qur’an and Sunnah. We still remain adherents of the Jama’atul Ahlus Sunnah Lidda’awati Wal Jihad. May Allah help us to accomplish our mission. “At the beginning of these exchanges, I was deceived. I was made to articulate my beliefs in writing, but this was rejected,” Shekau had said.
But in his reaction, al- Barnawi called Shekau a liar and noted that he has taken full charge of the operations of the sect. According to al-Barnawi, Shekau was forcefully keeping people in the group against their will, while using women and children as human shield.
“He was boasting that if we attempt to escape from his empire his men will kill us. He is a liar. I am not the only one that left, but eight of us left, all kitchen cabinet members. And right now two other top members are on the way to join us. We are all here.
The issue of Islam is not personal, there is no sentiment in Islam, and that is why we are here. Nobody can dare us or stop us from it, no matter how he brags. “Here we are on our own. Can’t you see how we left your empire? We left women and everything and just left with guns on our shoulders.
We would have crushed anyone that stood on our way. “We said we would not touch anyone but just go on our way to our religion. We will fight for the cause of Allah and work against personalising Jihad and against unjustifiable killings and shedding of blood.
We are out because you came out with your own cassette. We want our people to know proper Islam because Allah in the Quran forbids killings without justification. Just like Allah gave us power to kill infidels, there are those he said we shouldn’t kill without reason.
“In the Quran, Allah forbade Muslims from killing one another… and he also taught against killing in secret. If it is serious punishment, it must be public for people to know and witness it. But once you see killings in secret, there is something fishy and this is what we noticed with Shekau.
What he is doing is not Islam. He said we should follow him and we agreed, but we later realised it is another thing and we said no. We have to stick to the Quran and what Allah said, not [follow] someone’s waywardness. “We have vowed to say the truth. If we will be killed, let us be killed.
If we will be eaten, let us be eaten up and if we will be roasted, let us be roasted. We will not leave our fellow brothers in the dark; this message of mine will get to Sambisa Forest. It will get into Shekau’s house. We have agents that will convey the message no matter how he dislikes it.
“Almighty Allah is against killings of Muslims. Allah is saying better heaven and earth fall than innocent soul of a Muslim, but you have Shekau, who likes killing our own people. He is always boasting that he will kill. Okay, continue to kill, you will also be killed. Who will dwell here forever? Everybody will die.
You will also die some day. And there is no one that will die without reaching his day of death. You can see we are here alive, all of us here sitting. Anyone that Allah did not kill you cannot kill him. The same way, you cannot stop anyone Allah willed his death.
“In one of our Shura meetings, someone asked Shekau how he felt about Muslims running away from their own land to the land of the infidels for their own safety. Shekau said Muslims are also infidels and should be killed like the infidels.
These people are not infidels, they are Muslims running for their lives, and he insisted that they are infidels and should be killed. Shekau is ignorant of the fact that it is forbidden for a Muslim to be killed after being chased out of Islamic Caliphate to a strange land and [when the Muslim] has not taken part in any conspiracy against Muslims.
“We fled from him with our religion for good. It is there in the books, when you are not allowed to practise Islam you have the liberty to flee and follow what you know is right. Shekau, we did not touch you, don’t touch us. If you touch us we will touch you and we are many against you.
We have people in your house and even your present hideout. You don’t know us enough; we are ready for anyone to kill us, even if it is infidels, for so long as we will make heaven and be before Allah. That is why we are countering the false ideology you are spreading.
“Shekau said he is looking for our information. We also have your information and we are close to you. What kind of thing is this? There were states we captured as part of the Islamic Caliphate and you allowed men to be looting property. We told you and you did not take action.
We don’t know this brand of Jihad; you kill children, women and bomb people. We should be looking for infidels and not our own people. How can we be killing people in the mosques when there are churches, barracks? It is nonsense and Allah will ask you, if you don’t repent.
“Another thing is, Shekau is interpreting verses with his own opinions and the cassettes are being spread. Stop interpreting the Quran with your own opinion. We who lived with Shekau knew his conduct. What is not in the Hadith, he will insist that it is there.
Kai, Imam, all these interpretations are your own creation. Please go and seek education and knowledge from those that know. “You forgot how you rushed to pass a verdict over the case of a man over sheep? And you rushed a judgment that saw the man’s hand amputated.
The same thing happened in Bama. Five of us were sitting, and the issue came up of some fighters who married slaves. He quickly said they should be killed. The killings spread to eleven persons. Later on, the allegation turned out to be false. Some fighters murmured and said there would be no peace with his injustices.
And all these are not part of Islam. People complained of several acts, but because Shekau was enjoying power he refused to take action. Who killed the Malam in Banki? Is it not you that killed him? The same thing happened to a man you brought inside and killed. “You forgot one day I told you that your wives are not aware that their husbands are alive.
You dismissed me with a wave of hand. And you said their husbands should be killed. Is it not you that killed them? Are you not the one that killed Malam Abdulmalik? He is popularly known as Baba Abdulmalik, and you killed him. And you are killing them secretly when, in Islam, there is nothing like secret killings even of an infidel.
Even if it is Buhari that comes to you following an agreement, if you killed him, it is not Islam. Even if it is an infidel, if you killed him it is not Islam. If you are afraid of their treaty, tell them we are enemies, instead of drawing people close tokill them.
“Where did you see the judgment of Allah secretly done? And you said you are following Allah. Is it the Prophet that said this? This is not Islam, Shekau. “You killed Ameer Falluja because he was close to Abdulmalik. When he entered, he never came out.
The same way, you killed Bagomna because he bought a house in Amchide. If someone bought a house, is that a reason to kill him? With your hand you killed him. Bagomna came on a bike, and you just killed him. When we asked you why you said since he went to war he did not return.
You are a liar; you killed him on your own. Is this Islam? Are you sure it is Islam you are doing, killing war commanders, and killing clerics? “You killed Mustapha, you killed Kakaali, and you told women that they died in the war, but insiders knew that you killed them.
It was Aliyu that you asked to call one of them. You remember where you used to stay in one location. On getting there one day they called the man guarding the place. When he came, you killed him. When the second [man] appeared you repeated the same. From that moment did we not start failing and losing the war? You can’t think and repent.
When we fought infidels in Baga, did you remember the bravery [the men you killed] exhibited? Did you do half of their gallant fight? You are just sitting down; they will bring you cars, money, and other valuables and you still have the guts to betray them. “The same way you killed one man on trivial grounds that he was gossiping. Yet his contribution to this cause was incredible.
He was producing guns, and you just wasted him. And you wanted to kill one Aliyu and something happened. You wanted him killed, but failed and he succeeded in killing one of the two you sent to kill him. Is this Jihad? Is it not you that killed Mujaheed? Is it not you that killed Umar? Is it not you that killedAbumariam? Abumariam and Mujaheed were killed together by you.
What did they do to you? Can’t people tell you the truth? That is why some of us that want to tell you the truth fled so that you don’t kill us. And now that we are away, you can’t kill us unless we kill ourselves. We believe in Allah and have our own battalions. Send your agents and see a surprise. None of them can come here; we will finish them.
You also killed Abdullahi because of a dream. You keep telling people rubbish about leaders that killed their fighters. Those leaders killed in the open, but you killed secretly. “When Malam Umar was going to honor [Shekau’s] invitation, he called me and explained that Shekau had sent for him, but he had sent words pleading for forgiveness.
When he told me, I said he should believe in Allah and submit to his faith. When Umar went, [Shekau] came out and asked for a knife and a dagger. Very close to the river [Shekau] killed Umar. Is this Allah’s verdict? This is Haram for Shekau to make Muslims kill their brothers.
Shekau be careful, we are not part of this; I repent and will never follow you. I will never go back. If you fear Allah, you should better repent. We have revolted against your ideology and now cling to the real ideology of Allah. We are not part of a caliphate of injustices and shedding of blood.
We are not part of a religion that is not dictated by Allah. We are with our leader, [ISIS commander] Al-Baghdadi. If you say you will not follow him, we will know the truth. Anyway, you have revolted and are deceiving people. You even said it in your cassette that you were forced; that you only bear fake allegiance fearing that there would be an internal revolt against you.
Shekau killed many fighters, and we have exposed a few. “Another case of Shekau’s insensitivity is abandoning fighters to hunger [as well as] women and children who go without food while he is enjoying with his own family. Last year, 20 children died of malnourishment. Recently, 15 babies died in one day due to starvation.
I have a recorded message here, and I will play it here for all to hear. (The audio was played and Shekau was heard saying the following: “That children are dying, let even 100, 000 die now. Nonsense, am I the one holding them? I can only do what I can.
Am I here to breed babies? You came disturbing me. Who told you my duty is to look after babies? Who told you my duty is to look after fighters? If this is what you are talking about, then it is you that should look after me. Is this what Quran said? What do you mean?”).
“Even [when fighters] advance towards enemies, [Shekau] doesn’t make logistics available. The other time, we lost plenty of gas and fuel tofire. Before, you ruled over us, but now we are free. Another thing that made us leave you is because you don’t listen to your cabinet. If we follow Shekau, we will never make heaven. That is why we left. Stop giving opinionated fatwa.
“You don’t listen and accept our views. Even [Boko Haram founder, killed in 2009] Mohammed Yusuf, he would write his Friday preaching and table it before us for debate and scrutiny. We would collectively go through and work on it. But you refused [to do the same].
Are you more educated than Mohammed Yusuf? Is it not in my place that you were studying with your two items of clothes and under a tree in Maiduguri?“Another thing is Shekau doesn’t make weapons available for fighters. People fighting a war are left with no weapons.
We have lost many territories in our emerging Islamic caliphate to infidels because of your laxity. You are the cause. “This was the beginning of our revolt against you. If you leave us alone, we will leave you alone. If you continue antagonizing us, we will also continue.
If you repent, we will accept you and embrace you. You should repent and fear Allah. This is the open letter to you. “In our Shura meetings, there was a complaint that jihadists’ wives were taken away while they were fighting for Allah. What did you do? You did nothing, and fighters saw how you don’t bother about their welfare. You just go home and sleep with your wives and slaves while we are suffering. We are not with you.”