A Turkish state-run educational foundation has signed memorandums of understanding with 26 countries in Africa to take control of schools belonging to people from the faith-based Gülen movement. The Maarif Foundation is claimed to have been established to spread President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s Islamist ideology abroad.
“I don’t even know who Gülen or (Turkish President Recep Tayyip) Erdoğan are,” mother Oury Mbaye told the website following reports her child’s school could be handed over to the Turkish government-controlled Maarif Foundation. “If they are imposing managers on me that have no experience in education, I will transfer my children to a French school. I did not choose Maarif.”
The closure of Yavuz Selim schools isn’t just a blow for its students, but also for the state of education in Senegal, a country where about one-third of children remain out of school. The schools had a reputation for excellence, ranking for years among Senegal’s best. Students got top scores in national exams, and went on to study at international universities.
This terrorist attack that took place during a prayer on a Friday, a sacred day for Muslims, shows that the curse of terrorism has no respect for anything sacred, whether a church or mosque. Islam cannot be related to any such murderous acts. A true Muslim cannot be a terrorist and a terrorist cannot be a true Muslim.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama has refuted reports that 1,000 Turks will be extradited from Nigeria on the request of the Turkish government. Onyeama assured all foreign nationals, including Turks resident in the country legally, of full protection under Nigerian and International Laws.
The Hizmet Movement, founded by exiled Turkish cleric Fethullah Gulen, hosted a panel discussion by its South African branch last weekend. The purpose of the event was to clarify misconceptions about the movement and its involvement in the current political situation in Turkey.
Morocco has joined the list of countries where Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is pursuing the followers and sympathizers of the Hizmet (Service) movement. Like many countries, Morocco has succumbed to Ankara’s pressure and arrested individuals affiliated with the movement.
Sudanese law enforcement detained Turkish businessman Memduh Çıkmaz at Ankara’s request as part of an investigation into the Gülen movement. Çıkmaz was detained in the capital city of Khartoum on Wednesday and denied request to meet his lawyer and family members.
The Liberian Government says the Turkish Light International School System remains a private institution of learning in Liberia and enjoys all the privileges provided all educational institutions operating in the country have until it concludes an investigation into allegations that operators of the school here were linked to a failed coup in Turkey.
Like many autocratic leaders, Erdogan was quick to blame members of opposition and sympathizers of Gulen Movement for the coup attempt. He particularly singled out the United States-based Turkish cleric, Fethullah Gulen as the mastermind of the coup, even when it is on record that the highly-respected cleric publicly condemned the coup when it was still on.
The Archbishop of Abuja made the statement during a Friendship and Dialogue Dinner, organised by UFUK Dialogue in Abuja recently. He said, “God has put us all in this one boat called Nigeria. And we really have no other option than to try to live together in peace with all our differences.