New 100 Naira Note: Muslim Group Challenges Jonathan Over Presence of Jewish Symbol


A popular Muslim organization, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), has voiced its concern regarding the new centenary N100 note over a “jewish symbol” which they said is present on the new note.

Professor Ishaq Akintola, the director of the group laid the allegations claiming that they have received numerous reports from many people who observed the symbol hence, he demanded that the Federal Government explain the reason behind such symbol. He also alleged that the security system in Aso Rock was saturated with Israeli security operatives, while Jonathan had chosen to marginalize the North as was seen at the national conference.

Below is an excerpt from the statement:

“The Federal Government, on November 12, 2014 unveiled the new design for the N100 commemorative centenary banknote which will be officially issued on December 19.

“However, the office of the Muslim Rights Concern has been inundated with calls for action on the Jewish symbol on the new note. Nigerian Muslims are complaining that the Arabic writing in Hausa language (the Ajami script) that read ‘Naira Dari’ (i.e. one hundred naira) on the N100 note has been removed and replaced with the Jewish symbol, the Star of David.

“As a faith-based human rights organisation which believes in the dialogue option, MURIC is duty bound to articulate the demands of Nigerian Muslims, particularly on matters which have to do with imbalance in treatment of the adherents of the different religions governments (federal or state).

“MURIC recalls that Arabic inscriptions which have always been on Nigerian currency since independence were unceremoniously removed in 2005 from N5, N10, N20 and N50 denominations. They remained on N100, N200, N500 and N1,000 denominations.

“Nigerian Muslims regard the latest action, namely, the supplanting of Arabic with Jewish symbol from the new N100 as a continuation of the campaign of elimination by substitution against Arabic language and, by implication, against Nigerian Muslims.

“It is well-known that a large section of the Nigerian population use the Arabic Ajami and removing it from the new note will deprive millions of users of the Arabic Ajami of the ability to recognise, identify and use the new currency.

“Furthermore, putting the Jewish symbol on the new N100 falls short of international standard, as currencies worldwide are designed to suit each nation’s culture and history.

“Where does the Jewish symbol fit in? Which Nigerian community speaks the Jewish language? The insertion of the Jewish symbol is, therefore, clannish and parochial. It is tainted with undisguised religious fanaticism.

“There is nothing wrong for our president to like Israel as a nation, but it is another thing entirely to openly and brazenly promote Zionism at the highest office in this country when we are still struggling with the last vestiges of colonialism. Nigerian Muslims are becoming increasingly suspicious and very uncomfortable with the actions and inactions of President Jonathan.”

However, President Goodluck Jonathan has countered the claim that the Muslims Right Concern (MURIC) laid against him that the presence of a Jewish symbol in the newly proposed centenary N100 note  was his ploy to promote Nigeria as a Zion nation.

He explained that the implied Jewish symbol in MURIC’s statement was referring to the Star of David, and that “there is no where on that proposed note as indicated in the specimen that has been widely publicized where there is any Jewish or Zionist symbol or the Star of David.”

“The symbol that he is referring to is not a Jewish symbol. It is what they call spark security feature. It is an optical magnetic feature which enables the public to authenticate a currency note whether it is genuine or counterfeit. That is the function of that particular design.

“That design is not a hexagram and it is not in any way associated with Israel or Jewish or Zionism. It is two squares merged into one with a Manila briquet, which is a symbol of the cowrie money used during the colonial era.”

Dr. Reuben Abati; the special Adviser to the president on media and publicity accused MURIC of attempting to sow a seed of antipathy owning to the 100 Naira note’s design.  “the value of the note is written out in the three major languages in Nigeria, recognised in the constitution: Yoruba, Igbo and Hausa.

“No attempt has been made to use this proposed naira note to discriminate anybody and the attack on President Jonathan is undeserved, unwarranted and totally unkind. I believe that MURIC will see the need to quickly apologise for misleading the public and for issuing that kind of statement that can cause disaffection against the President,”

Abaati also said that “there are no Israeli security operatives saturating the security system in Aso Rock. “To convince himself that this is true, we will like to invite Prof. Akintola on a visit to the Presidential Villa, to see whether indeed it is Israelis that are in charge of security.

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