Posted by News Express | 16 April 2016 | 4,479 times
A new Islamic sect is fast gaining ground in northern Nigeria, with the university town of Zaria as headquarters, leading to disquiet in government circles. Kaduna State Governor Nasir el-Rufai recently raised the alarm regarding the sect, saying that it constitutes a potential security threat.
An exclusive report this morning in the Abuja-based Daily Trust unmasked the new Islamic group as the Gawsiyya sect. The paper reported how it traced the group’s spiritual leader, Sheikh Isma’il Bn Sayyadi Yusha’u, to the sect’s headquarters in a remote village on the outskirts of Zaria, Kaduna State. An isolated settlement where only Sheikh Yusha’u and members of the sect dwell, the area has been renamed Madinatu Zaria and is named after Madina, in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
According to Daily Trust, “Madinatu Zaria is located between Zaria’s ancient gate of Kofar Gayan and Amana Mai Kasuwa town in Igabi local government area of Kaduna State. To get there from Kofar Gayan takes a 20-kilometre journey through the villages of Yaskwaki, Mangi and Turunku. At Siddi village, a traveller to Madinatu Zaria diverts from the main road to take a bush path that would lead him to the settlement, which is another journey of about five kilometres.”
Sheikh Yusha’u dismissed Governor El-Rufai’s claim that the Gawsiyya sect is a new one. “He said they are adherents of the Tijjaniyya sect, and their leaders are Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), Sheikh Ahmadu Tijjani, a 19th Century North African cleric, and Sheikh Ibrahim Nyass, a 20th Century Senegalese cleric,” the report said. It quoted the Zaria native, of about age 50, as saying that he has followers all over Nigeria and beyond.
It quoted Sheikh Yusha’u, who schooled at the feet of several distinguished Islamic scholars, as saying that he has been divinely anointed as Gawsiy.
Gawsiy, according to Sheikh Yusha’u, is a divine anointment that usually takes place every century. He said Allah chooses one of his servants to lead Muslims globally. He said before his anointment as Gawsiy, the last one that the world had was Sheikh Ibrahim Nyass of Senegal. He said age, wealth or other social status is not prerequisite to the attainment of the position. He added that since Allah has anointed him as the new Gawsiy, Muslims all over the world are obliged to accept and give their allegiance to him.
“All the people that are spreading these rumours are mischief-makers. If they are jealous about my position as the new Gawsiy, they are fighting Allah, because I was not the one that gave myself this position. It is not my power, age or wealth that gave me this position of Gawsiy,” Sheikh Yusha’u said.
•Photo by Daily Trust shows Gawsiyya Sheikh Isma’il Yusha’u, right, with Malam Salisu Abubakar, sect leader in Makarfi.
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