ABUJA - A leading Nigerian Muslim group is spearheading a cohort of education projects and social services to less-privileged people in Africa's most populous country.
"Our organization will continue to show the light of Islam through our anti-poverty programs to the people," Alhaji Daood Imran Molaasan, National President of the Jama'at Ta'awunil Muslimeen (TAWUN), told OnIslam.net.
"TAWUN aspires for united and strong Nigeria with peaceful and relationship among tribes and religions.
He said the Muslim group, a subset of Muslim community in the Nigeria's South-western Osun State, will carry out a number of projects to serve youth and women in Nigeria.
Molaasan listed a number of projects the Muslim group aspires to carry out to serve Nigerians.
"TAWUN aspires to establish Women Empowerment Center which will be channeled at creating freedom for women i.e. Literacy department; Technical Skill Acquisition department; Education department; Computer Training department; Financial Granting department; Mini-Loan Scheme department," he said.
TAWUN leader said his group has established many schools, vocation centers, public libraries to help less-privileged Nigerians, Muslims and non-Muslims.
"The organization is known for promoting peace and progress of the society, helping the less privileged and promoting good governance in the country," he said.
"Series of programs had been held to promote civic responsibility of our organization to the nation."
"TAWUN aspires for justice and equity in all states and Nigeria at large without tribal prejudice or religious bigotry," he said.
The group "aspires for comfort of masses by encouraging government to provide employment opportunities and infrastructural facilities."
No Boko Haram
The Muslim group denies accusations by security agencies of seeking to enforce a "Boko Haram-style" in Nigeria.
"It will be against our vision and mission to work with anybody - governmental or non-governmental organizations - to disrupt the peace of a peaceful state," Molaasan told OnIslam.net.
"I assure you that the intimidation from this agency notwithstanding."
Earlier, the state security service has issued a report linking TAWUN of seeking to create a "Boko Haram-style Islamic state" in Nigeria.
The group, however, denies the allegations, saying it is considering a lawsuit against the government over the claim.
"The most ridiculous part of the allegation is that Jama'at Ta'awunil Muslimeen is planning to become a Boko Haram type' organization," the group's leader said.
"This is beyond any imagination for an organization like ours which has established some schools, hospitals, cyber cafÃ© to change from creative development to a destructive organization. God forbid!"
Boko Haram, a Hausa term meaning "Western education is sinful", is loosely modeled on Afghanistan's Taliban.
The militant group says it is fighting enemies who have wronged its members through violence, arrests or economic neglect and corruption.
It has been blamed for a campaign of shootings and bombings against security forces and authorities in the north since 2009.
But recently, the sect has carried out attacks against Christians.
The TAWUN leader insists that his group's objectives are to serve the Nigerian community, particularly Muslims, who are the lower wrung of the poverty ladder in the country.
"The contribution of our organization to youth development, self-empowerment, and its interest in good governance made it possible for Oyinlola, the former governor of Osun State, to commission our Al-Qudus Islamic Information Center on December 24, 2005," he said."If we were religious extremists, the ex-governor, being a Christian, would not have attended our program."