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ENDSARS: Buhari mocks dead police victims

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Tunde Odesola

(Published in The PUNCH, on Monday, October 19, 2020)

When #ENDSARS protesters upended one of the czars of Nigeria’s 36 states, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in Lagos and he fled in surrender to Aso Rock last week, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) burst into laughter.

Buhari’s laughter wasn’t hearty. It was dry and mirthless, whizzing like a horsewhip on bare skin in harmattan. The laughter echoes the snapping of the windpipe when the tiger buries its yellow fangs in the back of the antelope’s neck, eyes glazed.

To many, Buhari’s laughter, sardonically, betrays the ultimate insincerity of Aso Rock about solving Nigeria’s problems. To some others, the unsaid words behind the laughter was, “See how dis small boy governor dey shake like leaf because of common protest. Kai, he don see fire!” In truth, I agree that Sanwo-Olu is a small boy in comparison to General Buhari.

Agitated, small boy Sanwo-Olu, who has been sacked since about two weeks ago from the Governor’s Office, Alausa, by youths protesting non-stop police killings, brutality and extortion nationwide, was seen in a viral video eagerly explaining to Buhari what Lagos State has done about the requests of the youth protesters.

Wearing a face mask and clenching a big brown envelope containing the demands of the protesters, Sanwo-Olu gesticulated and physically presented his envelope to Buhari, who has formed a habit of receiving guests without wearing a face mask, unguardedly sending a signal to the citizenry that foolhardy defiance is a protection against the coronavirus.

Talking with the haste of a pilot whose plane is in distress, Sanwo-Olu told Buhari, “They (protesters) said we should release all the protesters, we’ve released them, they said we should set up a trust fund to pay compensation to the families of the ones that have died, I’ve set up my own trust fund. Today, I’ve announced it.”

Then Buhari laughed.

If Sanwo-Olu was shocked about the graceless laughter, he never showed it. He continued, “The third one, they said that we should set up some inquiry for the persons that are bitter…(Buhari interrupts, saying: “Yeah, I said that. I said that in response.”)

Sanwo-Olu continued, “So, tomorrow, the IGP is coming to the Governors Forum, he’s going to ask each of us to set up a four-man or five-man team. And the final one is, they said we should increase the salary of the police. The IGP said he was working on that. And (the) IGP said he’s going to be working to take some of them through some psychosocial treatments. Some, they’re going to go to the Force hospitals, they’re going to clean them up and check them. The ones that can still be absorbed, they will. So, everything is working but I just want to present this formally. (He hands over the envelope to Buhari). Thank you, sir.”

For mocking, instead of mourning those who have died, many Nigerians have called the President uncharitable names. But as annoying as the President’s inappropriate laughter was, I sincerely plead for forgiveness on his behalf. I plead for forgiveness for Buhari because I know that the sweat of the dog is masked by its fur just as our President’s sweat is masked by the splendour of Aso Rock.

As desirable as laughter is, it’s open to ambiguity, I need say. A laughter can be joyous or sorrowful or empty. If I was Buhari, my line of defence against wailers would be that my laughter during Sanwo-Olu’s presentation was sorrowful. I would remind them of the Yoruba proverb, “Oro buruku tohun terin,” which says misfortune walks side  by side with laughter.

To those who seek to know whether the President would have laughed if any of his children was killed while protesting for a better Nigeria, I will say: Major General Buhari’s children are obedient, hard working ladies and gentlemen, too busy to lazy about on highways smoking, eating, drinking and singing. And why would Buhari’s children march on the streets to seek a better country when there’s nothing wrong in the Nigeria that fuels the presidential jets that keep them in the air and the limousines that convey them on land?

Buhari’s sweat or laughter, if you like, is seen by many protesting Nigerians as the gerontocratic trait of a leader in need of urgent retirement away from the rigours of critical thinking and the energy-sapping demands of nation-building. A majority of the protesting youths believes that in thought, word and deed, Buhari has no purpose in governance because he’s not in tandem with modern-day democratic realities.

This is why Major General Buhari deserves our collective empathy because he’s at the end of his tether. I’m sure Buhari is shocked and can’t understand why for the first time in the nation’s history, hitherto docile Nigerian youths have suddenly found their voice and massively risen to confront their oppressors. I can hear Buhari asking, who’s funding these protesting youths? I can imagine the loss on his face when a security report shows that the youths’ call for real change is fuelled by the misrule of his government. I can see worry on the President’s face when told that the youth agitation is being powered on the social media. I can hear, ‘social media kwo? Is social media contesting in 2023?’

Buhari deserves pity because he can’t do more than laugh as the events of the past two weeks are totally beyond him. This is why it took earth-shaking nationwide protests for Buhari to know that Nigerians are being slaughtered by the members of a police force long overdue for reformation.

Or, doesn’t Buhari together with his ministers, legislators in shallow chambers, principalities residing in Government Houses nationwide, the Inspector General of Police, secretaries to federal and state governments etc know that the police are killing, raping, maiming and extorting innocent Nigerians before these protests? They all kept quiet because they don’t represent the people. They only represent their pockets.

While Buhari and Nigeria’s past generation of leaders shout, “Off the mike,” the fresh blood out on the streets of Lagos, Kaduna, Abuja, Kano, Port Harcourt, Enugu, Osogbo, Ibadan, Owerri, shout, “Soro soke!” a synonym for, “Speak louder!” While Buhari, Goodluck Jonathan, Olusegun Obasanjo and their failed political leaderships are enmeshed in innumerable corruption allegations, the young generation of youths protesting on the streets demand openness, probity and equity.

Today, every Nigerian political office holder is afraid. They know the scales are falling off. Nigerian youths have torn the ‘lazy’ tag pinned on them by Buhari. They’ve also defied the notion that only money can mobilise the citizenry. For 60 years, the old order has failed the nation. A new order is rising. May it birth safely.

If the millions of jobs created by Obasanjo, Yar’Adua, Jonathan, Buhari administrations are true, no youth will be out on the streets today. If the thousands of hectares of farmlands they yearly vote billions of naira to cultivate are real, hungry youths won’t troop out to the streets for food at the protest grounds. If there was electricity in homes, some of the protesters would sit back at home to watch TV. If Buhari gave hope, the youths would cope.

Nigerians have perpetually listened to the broken record titled, “Nigeria’s unity is not negotiable.” Today, I laugh to see these funny leaders running helter-skelter, negotiating the country’s peace. Well, Buhari should know that being out of power for 21 years can’t kill the lust for power in Nigeria’s military. Half a word is enough for the wise.

In captivity, when a tiger or lion tastes human blood, it’s killed instantly because the big cats will kill more people after tasting human blood, for human blood is tastier than other animals’ blood because of its saltiness.

Nigerian youths have tasted the power to change the ills of their society. I pray they never remain the same again.

God bless Nigerian youths.

Email: tundeodes2003@yahoo.com

Facebook: @tunde odesola

Twitter: @tunde odesola

Opinion

IGP tenure: Police affairs minister goofed, says rights group

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Inspector-General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba

Rights and Freedom Advocates (RIFA) has faulted Minister of Police Affairs, Muhammad Maigari Dingyadi, for saying the current Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Alkali Baba, would not be retiring midway into the general elections.

The IGP was due to retire on March 1 this year. But the minister was quoted last Wednesday after leaving the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting that President Muhammadu Buhari had extended Baba’s tenure as IGP, citing Nigeria Police Act 2020 to indicate the current IGP would serve four-year tenure.

But RIFA, in a statement signed by its president, Luqman Soliu, said it viewed the minister’s position as inconsistent with the laws of the land.

It argued that the minister’s position ran contrary to the law and that the quoted Act was being misinterpreted, adding the tenure elongation could create a problem in the police force.

The statement read in part, “Usman Alkali Baba record at Nigeria Police Force showed his date of birth as March 1, 1963 while he enlisted into Nigeria Police Force on March 15, 1988 as Assistant Superintendent of Police and is expected to bow out of active service on March 1, 2023 when he would clock 60 years. Similarly, the IGP by March 15,2023 would clock 35 years in service. As a result, his post would be vacant effective March 1, 2023.

“However, the law is explicit on the tenure of any IGP and those qualified to be IGP.

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“The minister was said to be relying on Nigeria Police Act, 2020 Section 7(3) and (6) to arrive at his position.

“Also, the minister was further quoted to have said the IGP was appointed by the President on April 6,2021 but his appointment confirmed in June 2021 by the Nigeria Police Council in line with the laws of the land and so must spend four (4) years.

“Even though the tenure of the IGP has witnessed improved compliance with the laws of Nigeria and sanctioning/discipline of some errant police officers mostly reported by the media, that cannot warrant elongating his tenure beyond the constitutionally guaranteed period.

“On the issue of the IGP, the 1999 Constitution (as amended) is very clear on the appointment and removal of IGP when it states in section 215 (1) (a) that:“An Inspector-General of Police who, subject to section 216 (2) of this Constitution shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the Nigeria Police Council from among serving members of the Police Force”.

“In addition, section 216(2) provides that: “Before making any appointment to the office of the Inspector-General of Police or removing him from office the President shall consult the Nigeria Police Council”.

“Similarly, Nigeria Police Act 2020 states in Section 7(2)that ‘the person to be appointed as Inspector-General of Police shall be a senior police officer not below the rank of an Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG) with the requisite academic qualifications of not less than a first degree or its equivalent in addition to professional and management experience’; Section 7(3) of same Police Act states ‘The Inspector General of Police shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the Police Council from among serving members of the Police Force’. Also, Section 7(6) provides ‘The person appointed to the office of the Inspector-General of Police shall hold office for four years’. This subsection was what the minister was relying on to make his position. However, Section 18 (8) of Nigeria Police Act, 2020 is explicit on tenure of a police officer when it says, ‘Every police officer shall, on recruitment or appointment, serve in the Nigeria Police Force for a period of 35 years or until he attains the age of 60 years, whichever is earlier’. So, the law states that someone who is no longer a police officer or who is not a police officer cannot be IGP. So, if the law says by 60 years of age or by 35 years in police service, IGP Usman Alkali is no longer a police officer, how then can he be eligible to be IGP afterwards when the laws says only a serving police officer can be IGP?

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“With the above, the law is very clear on the tenure of a serving IGP and which the President or a Minister cannot override as the law is superior to occupant of any post in the land. Therefore, instead of the minister dissipating energy to seeking the extension of tenure of IGP Usman Alkali, he should focus his energy on searching for the next IGP before the end of February 2023 when Usman Alkali would cease to be a police officer.

“Similarly, the minister should occupy himself with how to convene the next Police Council meeting that would recommend a new IGP for appointment before March 1, 2023.

“Therefore, the minister and the government should stop contemplating on tenure elongation for the current IGP. Rather, the government should strive for improved policing that meets the yearnings of the populace and restore public confidence in the Force.”

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Opinion

Old age comes with aggression: Be patient with your parents (an appraisal of Qur’an17 : 23-24)

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Bismillaahir-rahmaanir-raheem (In the name of Allāh, Most Gracious, Most Merciful) 
Indeed, longevity of life is one of the greatest favours of Allāh that He bestows upon whomsoever He wills from amongst His servants. In Allah’s hands lies the power to create life and to take life; He rations it as He deems fit. Sometimes, He takes the life of the infant and the youthful, and grants respite to the aged and weak. Who dare questions His actions?  (لا يسأل عما يفعل وهم يسئلون)
Old age is a blessing and a curse. A popular adage in my mother tongue goes thus: “Rayi kpalo e wo gbata takechi”; meaning: (Long life heals all wounds). That’s the blessing part. Conversely, in Yoruba, the adage is, “o’ fe pe l’aye, o si fe k’oju re oribi, o f’owo mu kan ni” (You desire a long life, but hate to face travails; you would have to chose either of the two). That’s the curse. What will make us understand this theory better are the following verses:
a.
 وَمِنْكُمْ مَنْ يُتَوَفَّى وَمِنْكُمْ مَنْ يُرَدُّ إِلَى أَرْذَلِ الْعُمُرِ لِكَيْلَا يَعْلَمَ مِنْ بَعْدِ عِلْمٍ شَيْئًا
“And of you is he who is caused to die; and of you is he who is brought back to the worst part of life, so that after having knowledge he does not know anything… ” Q. 22:5
b.
 اللَّهُ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُمْ مِنْ ضَعْفٍ ثُمَّ جَعَلَ مِنْ بَعْدِ ضَعْفٍ قُوَّةً ثُمَّ جَعَلَ مِنْ بَعْدِ قُوَّةٍ ضَعْفًا وَشَيْبَةً يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ وَهُوَ الْعَلِيمُ الْقَدِيرُ
” Allah He is who created you from a state of weakness, the  He gave (you) strength after weakness, then He ordained weakness a d hoary hair after strength; He creates what He pleases, and He is the Knowing, the Powerful.”  Q. 30:54
c.
وَمَنْ نُعَمِّرْهُ نُنَكِّسْهُ فِي الْخَلْقِ أَفَلا يَعْقِلُون
“And  he to whom We grant long life We reverse in creation (physical and mental capacity); so will they not understand?” Q. 36:66
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It is natural, therefore, that at times, or most times, old people reason and behave like toddlers; the more they get old, the worse they become. Some old people now wear pampers like infants; Some are fed like babies; Some defecate and urinate in their clothes; and almost all lose their memory of things that they hitherto knew. However, the worst form disposition that comes with old age is anger, harshness, and aggression. More than 2/3 of old people get aggressive at the slightest provocation and, sometimes, even without provocation. Like babies, old people feel vulnerable and unsafe due to their physical weakness. Most times, they feel lonely and abandoned; which is why they often turn talkative when they finally get someone to talk to.
Just before you feel bored by their oft-repeated, boring, meaningless, unnecessary and never-ending discussions; just before you start feeling like to throw up from the odoriferous smell oozing from the excreta of your mother in the potty; just before you get tired of bathing her all the time; remember how she endured all of these for you for several years.
[20/01, 06:51] Abdulfatai A. Ibrahim: It is based on the physical and mental weaknesses that characterized old age that Islam commands us to be gentle, decorous and compassionate while dealing with our parents. These injunctions, as we shall later explain apply to all manners of parents: non-Muslims, deadbeats, addicts, insane, nominal but non-practising Muslims, etc. No matter how lazy or lackadaisical or insensitive one’s parents are to one’s needs; even if they (both or one of them) abandoned one to struggle for survival, one MUST observe the provisions of these injunctions with them. Allah says:
وَقَضَى رَبُّكَ أَلَّا تَعْبُدُوا إِلَّا إِيَّاهُ وَبِالْوَالِدَيْنِ إِحْسَاناً إِمَّا يَبْلُغَنَّ عِنْدَكَ الْكِبَرَ أَحَدُهُمَا أَوْ كِلَاهُمَا فَلَا تَقُلْ لَهُمَا أُفٍّ وَلَا تَنْهَرْهُمَا وَقُلْ لَهُمَا قَوْلاً كَرِيماً * وَاخْفِضْ لَهُمَا جَنَاحَ الذُّلِّ مِنَ الرَّحْمَةِ وَقُلْ رَبِّ ارْحَمْهُمَا كَمَا رَبَّيَانِي صَغِيراً
“And your Lord has decreed that you worship not except Him, and give your parents good treatment. Whether one or both of them attain old age (while) with you (while you’re alive), say not to them uff (an expression of disapproval or irritation), and do not repel (shout at them) but speak to them a noble word. And lower to them the wing of humility out of compassion and say, “My Lord, have mercy upon them as they brought me up (when I was) small.” (Q. 17:23)
To underscore the significance of treating one’s parents with utmost respect, the Prophet (pbuh) mentioned disobedience to one’s parents as part of the most heinous crimes in Islam.
و عن عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ بْنِ أَبِي بَكْرَةَ عَنْ أَبِيهِ رَضِي اللَّهُ عَنه قَالَ قَالَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللَّه عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: أَلَا أُنَبِّئُكُمْ بِأَكْبَرِ الْكَبَائِرِ ثَلَاثًا؟ قَالُوا: بَلَى يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ، قَالَ: الْإِشْرَاكُ بِاللَّهِ وَعُقُوقُ الْوَالِدَيْنِ وَجَلَسَ وَكَانَ مُتَّكِئًا فَقَالَ: أَلَا وَقَوْلُ الزُّورِ قَالَ فَمَا زَالَ يُكَرِّرُهَا حَتَّى قُلْنَا لَيْتَهُ سَكَتَ
“The Prophet (pbuh) said: Should I inform you about the most heinous crimes (he said it thrice)? We said, yes, please. He said, “ascribing partners to Allah, disobedience to one’s parents (and he was reclining, so he sat up and continued) and making false statements. He said it so repeatedly that we wished he had kept quiet.”
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The verse quoted above has the following injunctions:
i. It is forbidden to say #uff to one’s old parents: According to Qur’ānic exegetes, uff means showing irritation at their excesses; such as  urination, excretion or the likes. Tabari wrote:
 قال: ثنا سفيان، عن ليث، عن مجاهد، في قوله) فَلا تَقُلْ لَهُمَا أُفٍّ وَلا تَنْهَرْهُمَا (قال: إن بلغا عندك من الكبر ما يبولان ويخرآن، فلا تقل لهما أف تقذّرهما.حدثنا القاسم، قال: ثنا الحسين ، قال: ثني حجاج،عن ابن جريج، عن مجاهد إما يَبْلُغانَّ عِندك الكبر فلا تَقُل لهما أف حين ترى الأذى، وتميط عنهما الخلاءوالبول ، كما كانا يميطانه عنك صغيرا، ولا تؤذهما.
(Summary) “When your parents have attained old age, do not show any sign of displeasure, discomfort or irritation at their excesses; even when they defecate or urinate on their body. You should gladly wash them with gentleness and tenderness like they washed you at your tender age.”
ii. It is forbidden to shout at them: According to the Mufassiruun, shouting at one’s parents include: raising one’s voice at them, interrupting them while they are talking, talking before them without the permission to do so, walking out on them when they are talking to one, showing displeasure at the way they address one harshly or shabbily, not paying attention to their discussion (such as receiving calls, pinging, or turning your back at them), etc. All of these are Haram.
iii. It is compulsory to address them in the most honourable way: Imagine what some of us would have done to our fathers if we were in Prophet Ibraheem’s shoes. In spite of the fact that his father was a Mushrik, Ibraheem was never harsh to him in his speech. In fact, he didn’t address him as يا أبي: my father; rather he said, يا أبت: my dear father! لا حول ولا قوة إلا بالله العلي العظيم! What a role model he is for us all!
Our parents are more honourable than any other being on earth. Yet, when we address them, we do so crudely in a manner that we can never address our teachers or even political godfathers. In fact, some people respect their friends more than they respect their parents! أعوذ بالله من الشيطان الرجيم!
iv. We must humble ourselves before our parents: No matter how rich, famous, knowledgeable, or highly-placed we are in the scheme of life, we must suspend all of those shenanigans while treating our parents. Our wealth must be put at their disposal anytime, any day. One day, a young man came to report his father to the Prophet (pbuh) saying:
عن جابر رضي الله عنه أن رجلاً قال: يا رسول الله إن لي مالاً وولداً ، وإن أبي يريد أن يجتاح مالي، فقال: “أنت ومالك لأبيك”.
“O Messenger of Allāh! I have wealth and children, and my father wants to take (from) my wealth. The Prophet replied him saying, “YOU, & YOUR WEALTH BELONG TO YOUR FATHER.”

Dr. Sanusi Lafiagi is a lecturer in Department of Islamic Studies, Al-Hikmah University Ilorin

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Opinion

Towards understanding your religion: A short treatise on Sujūd as-sahw

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Introduction

Sujūd as-Sahw (prostration of forgetfulness) is a corrective measure legislated by Allāh to rectify certain unintended mistakes in Salāt. It is necessitated by any of the following 3 things:

1. Omission of an action of Salāt
2. Addition of an action of Salāt
3. Doubt over the performance or non-performance of an action of Salāt.

It is important to note that the action of Salāt that necessitates Sujūd as-Sahw is one that falls under any of the following categories:

1. Arkān
2. Wājibāt

The Arkān (pillars) of Salāt are:

1. Standing (for the one that is capable)
2. The opening Takbīrah
3. Recitation of Fātiha
4. Bowing
5. Rising from it
6. Being straight after rising
7. Prostration
8. Rising from it
9. Sitting in-between the two prostrations
10. Performing each pillar with accuracy
11. The last tashahhud (in a 3 or 4 raka’ah prayer & the only one in a two raka’ah prayer)
12. Sitting for the last tashahhud
13. The taslīm
14. Sequential order of the pillars

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The wājibāt (obligatory actions) of Salāt are as follows:
1. Any other Takbīrat apart from the opening Takbīrah
2. Saying of Sami’Allāhu liman hamidah
3. Saying of Rabbānā laka al-hamd
4. Saying of Subhāna rabī al-adhīm in bowing
5. Saying of Subhāna rabī al-A’lā in prostration
6. Saying of Rabbi ighfirlī in the sitting between sujūd
7. The first tashahhud
8. Sitting for the first tashahhud

These are the actions that necessitate the observance of Sujūd as-Sahw should one omit, add, or doubt their performance in Salāt forgetfully. It doesn’t matter if the Salāt were fard (obligatory) or nafl (supererogatory).

It’s important to note that this Sujūd applies to all persons observing Salāt (male/female, old/young, Imām/follower of an Imām/lone worshipper). It’s a compulsory action that’s needed to rectify an unintended mistake in Salāt.

A SHORT TREATISE ON SUJŪD AS-SAHW

Forms of Sujūd as-Sahw

Sujūd as-Sahw occurs at the tail end of Salāt after recitation of the final tashahhud. Depending on the incident that warrants it, it may be performed before the Taslīm (salutation of peace that ends Salāt)or after it.

‎If it is performed before the taslīm, it is termed ‘Qablī’, and if it is performed after taslīm, it is termed ‘Ba’dī’. The Arabic words قَبْلُ and بَعْدُ connote before & after respectively. Thus, the terms قَبْلِيٌّ & بَعْدِيٌّ are shortened forms of قبل التسليم/بعد التسليم.

Sujūd as-Sahwi is like the normal Sujūd of Salāt. It’s not special in any way. It consists of two Sajdah (prostration) with the normal adhkār of Sujūd; “Subhāna rabbiya’l-A’lā wa bihamdihī” or any other known adhkār of Sujūd (check Sifatu Salāti’n-Nabiyy by Al-Albānī)

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It is important to note that Muslim Jurists have expressed divergent views on whether Sujūd as-Sahw must be observed before the taslīm or after it, irrespective of whether the case was an omission, an addition or that of doubt. The summary of the views is as follows:

Hanafiyyah: All Sujūd as-Sahw must come after Taslīm.

Shāfi’iyyah: All Sujūd as-Sahw must come before Taslīm.

Hanābilah: All Sujūd as-Sahw must come before Taslīm save in 2 cases:

(i) If one makes Taslīm before completion of Salāt e.g. saying Taslīm after 2/3 raka’ats in dhuhr

(ii) If one doubts the exact number of raka’ah that he has prayed but decided to settle for the dominant number in his mind. In both instances, he must make the Sujūd after Taslīm.

Mālikiyyah: Sujūd as-Sahw can occur either before or after the Taslīm, depending on the case. Thus, if it’s a case of omission, it must come before Taslīm, and if it’s a case of addition, it must come after Taslīm. If, however, both omission & addition occur in the particular Salāt, then, the Sujūd must come before the Taslīm. These are the various views of the Jurists.

Sometimes, some people find themselves in a situation where they can not independently determine whether to do the Sujūd before Taslīm or after it. Before I go into specifics in the next thread, know this: Whichever if the Sujūd you do suffices, irrespective of the case.

Do not worry about whether the Sujūd was done before the Taslīm in a case of addition or that it was done after the Taslīm in a case of omission. What matters is that one does the Sujūd in order to rectify and make up for the unintended error committed in any of the acts of Salāt mentioned in the introduction to this treatise. That’s it. Your Salāt remains valid. Don’t let anyone confuse you & do not torture yourself trying to figure out what to do at when. Do I even need to go into specifics again? This is clear enough. I think.

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In conclusion, it’s important to note that after the Sujūd as-Sahw, there’s no need to repeat the tahiyyāt. One should immediately conclude the Salāt by uttering the Taslīm. If, however, one repeats the tahiyyāt either knowingly or unknowingly, his/her Salāt remains valid.

A SHORT TREATISE ON SUJŪD AS-SAHW

Categories of Worshippers With Regards to Sujūd as-Sahw

There are 3 categories of worshippers with regards to the Sujūd as-Sahw. They are:

1. The lone worshipper
2. The Imām
3. Follower of the Imām. This category is further divided into two:

a. The one that observed the prayer in full with the Imām
b. The one that missed a part of the prayer. This category is further divided into two:
a. The one that witnessed the mistake of the Imām
b. The one that joined the Salāt after the mistake has been made.

If a lone worshipper remembers after recitation of Fātiha but before observing rukū’ that he did not make the takbīrat al-Ihrām (opening Takbīrah), he must make the Takbīrah & continue his Salāt. In this situation, he’s not to make Sujūd as-Sahw. If, however, he remembers while on rukū’ or subsequent acts, he must return to the standing position, make the Takbīrat al-Ihrām, complete the Salāt and make the Sujūd as-Sahw after Taslīm.

Also, if he remembers after standing for the 2nd raka’ah, he must discard all that he has prayed immediately & start the Salāt afresh. After Taslīm, he must perform the Sujūd as-Sahw. This same rule applies to if the forgotten pillar were recitation of Fātiha. If he hasn’t reached the rukū’, he should recite Fātiha & no Sujūd as-Sahw is on him.

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If he has reached the rukū’, he must return to the standing position & recite Fātiha. After the Taslīm, he must make the Sujūd as-Sahw. If the lone worshipper recites Fātiha twice forgetfully, there’s nothing on him. If he recites loudly in a Salāt of silent recitation or vice versa, there’s no Sujūd on him. If he remembers in the middle of the recitation, he should continue from that verse without repeating all that he has recited earlier. If he unintentionally recites Fātiha twice, he’s not obliged to observe Sujūd as-Sahw according to the most authoritative view.

A SHORT TREATISE ON SUJŪD AS-SAHW

‪If the lone worshipper rises to an extra raka’ah (i.e. rising to a 3rd in Subh, or to a 4th in Maghrib, or to a 5th in Dhuhr, ‘Asr, or Ishā’), he must sit down immediately he realizes the error, recite the tahiyyāt, make Taslīm and prostrate twice thereafter. If he continues‬ ‪without sitting, his Salāt becomes invalid & he will start afresh.

If the lone worshipper forgets to make iqāmah before commencement of Salāt, his Salāt is valid & he doesn’t need to do any Sujūd. The iqāmah is neither a rukn (pillar) nor wājib(obligatory act) of Salāt.‬

‪If the lone worshipper forgets to say سمع الله لمن حمده or ربنا ولك الحمد, he must do the Sujūd before Taslīm. Once he has left the position where those statements are made, he needs not return to make it up. The Sujūd as-Sahw before Taslīm will take care of it.‬

‪If the lone worshipper forgets to say the adhkār of rukū’ or Sujūd at least once, he must do the Sujūd as-Sahw before Taslīm (in the view of the hanābilah). The majority of scholars regard those adhkār as Sunnah & as such no Sujūd is required. ‬

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‪A SHORT TREATISE ON SUJŪD AS-SAHW

If the lone worshipper remembers in the last raka’ah that he unintentionally omitted a pillar of Salāt (recitation of Fātiha or Rukū’, etc) in any of the previous raka’ah, he must discard that raka’ah and start counting from the one next to it. After the Taslīm, he must perform‬ ‪the Sujūd as-Sahw. Also, if he remembers in the last raka’ah that he omitted Fātiha in the first & rukū’ in the second, then, he must discard both raka’ahs & start counting from the raka’ah he’s on. In all of these, he must performs the Sujūd as-Sahw after Taslīm.‬

‪If the lone worshipper forgets to sit for the first Tashahhud but instead rose to the third raka’ah, here, there are three situations:‬

‪a. If he intends rising but is yet to rise. In this instance, he sits & recites the tashahhud & is not obliged to do Sujūd as-Sahw.‬

‪b. If he were on the rise but was yet to rise fully. In this instance, he must return back to the sitting position & recite the tahiyyāt.‬

‪c. If he had fully risen. Here, he must not return back to sitting. If he does, his Salāt becomes invalid (according to a view, another view is, he may return so long as he was yet to commence recitation of Fātiha. I favour the former view that he should not return once he’s fully risen). In both cases, he performs‬ ‪the Sujūd as-Sahw before Taslīm.

If the lone worshipper forgets to recite sūrah after Fātiha, his Salāt is valid & he doesn’t have to make any Sujūd as-Sahw. Recitation of sūrah after is not compulsory. If, however, he does the Sujūd as-Sahw before Taslīm, his Salāt remains valid.‬

Dr. Sanusi Lafiagi is a lecturer in Department of Islamic Studies, Al-Hikmah University Ilorin

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