Nigeria explains granting of Visa to controversial Islamic cleric

Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips was deported from Kenya hours after arriving.

The Minister of Interior, Abba Moro, has said given reasons why the Federal Government granted visa to an Islamic preacher, Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips.

Mr. Philips, who lives in Qatar, has been issued a Nigerian Visa to visit and preach in the Country.

The cleric has been barred from entering countries such as the United Kingdom and Germany. He was also deported from Kenya hours after landing in 2012 as authorities accused him of ‘mobilizing people with his controversial preachings.’

Speaking to journalists in Abuja on Sunday, the Minister of Interior, Abba Moro, said every country has its own requirement for the grant visa; especially against “the back drop of our security challenges, we also have our requirement for granting of visas.”

“We have our own black list too of people that because of our security situation should not be allowed into country.
“And if this preacher that you talk about for instance did not fall within the list of people black listed for their activities that are inimical to internal security. If he is preaching and the content of what he has submitted for the granting of visa that will not undermine the security of the country, then certainly we will grant him the visa. That is the purpose we have achieved here”.

He added that Nigeria will therefore not use” the refusal of visa by Germany, UK as a basis for refusing anybody visa here.

“I can assure you that the Nigerian security personnel are equal to the task of detecting whose activities are inimical to the situation of this country.

“Any moment that his preaching and activities are seen to be inimical to the security of this country I can assure you that we are up to the task of repatriating him as soon as possible.

“And his specific activities in this country guide the request that he has made which has also guided the action of the Nigerian Immigration Service in granting the visa.

“Apart from the preacher any other person that gains entry to this country whose activities undermine the integrity and security of this country will be properly treated”.

Born in 1946 in Jamaica, Mr. Philips grew up in Toronto in Canada and converted to Islam in 1972. He is an Islamic cleric, author and teacher.


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  • Truthometer

    It’s always ever too late before Nigerian government respond to anything serious. That is what happened in boko haram’s case. And we are still living with the consequence of the ineptitude of those running and ruining our country today, with both our blood and treasure. We are on the march again. That is exactly what is going to happen in the case of Mr. Phillips. If Mr. Abba Moro believes our corrupt security and intelligence apparatus are more capable and efficient than British’s and German’s, then I have a 12 miles bridge to sell to him in Abuja for less than N20,000. Nigeria is so blessed (or otherwise) with a lot of morons like Moro, taking a decision that could affect our security and well-being. What a great country?


      These people sre more interested in what goes into their pocket than the security and lives of Nigerians mate.

  • max

    Let’s wait if APC will condemn the issue of visa by FG to this terrorist. If APC fail to condemn it we will now know their manifesto.

    • learn

      I believe you are not being just by calling the cleric a terrorist. What do you know of him ?

      • Tualey

        I only know that he is a born terrorist! Nothing more…

        • learn

          Same as who were born a terrorist. Nothing more…

          • Tualey

            You all parasitic northerners will surely die being frustrated!. National conference will solve this problem soonest!

          • learn

            Anyway, you actually guessed wrong. I am not from the north but a muslim from the southwest. Why should anyone be frustrated because you feel others shouldn’t express their views. How many of your so called pastors from abroad have been in nigeria in recent times without being them labelled as terrorist ? He is already in the country, probably you have some break and go swimming in the Atlantic ocean.

          • Chiemele

            When I read comments like yours, I wonder if we truly hate ourselves this much or if its just the few racists amongst us. Nigerians of all tribes and religions work together, live together and marry one another. Why is this?

          • Tualey

            I guess u live outside Nigeria, or may have not even visited Nigeria before. when next you come to Nigeria, try going to the Northern part, introduce yourself as a xtian and try getting married to a muslim girl. the rest would be history.

          • Chiemele

            Wrong! I did my NYSC in a Cotton firm in Gombe owned by a Northern Muslim. The GM was Ibo and married a Northern Christain. Religious fanaticism does exist, same as racism in Europe and USA, but guess what? Its protagonists are in the minority, vocal minority. Like its obvious from comments in most Naija blogs, no race nor ethnic group is immune from this virus. Until we are able to discuss National issues dispassionately until our opinions are not clouted by these sentiments we are no different from the slave raiders, the KKK and other such groups.

        • Aminu Abbas-mg

          He was born a Terrorist but converted to Islam in 1972, so u see he is no more terrorist isnt it?

    • xam

      but your party PDP granted him visa? So what is your problem?

  • ayoyo

    Don’t we have enough of our religious nuts?

  • Binta

    What makes him controversial?

  • abdulwasi

    Please ooo, what is controversial about this preacher? Is it controversial to speak the truth about social vices and condemning such? He was banned in Germany n US cause he is truthful and stands by it No matter what happens. Please this is no news, if u guys v no news y not stay mute.

  • Garden-City Boy

    This Aba Moro must be a dumbest ass of the century. Who does he really think he is dealing with….Chadian mullahs? Watch this argument: “We have our own black list too of people that because of our security situation should not be allowed into country”. This square-peg misfit sitting in the Internal Ministry round hole should publish this “BLACK LIST” for all to see. We want to know if Al Zawahiri, the wanted Bin Laden 2nd-in-command is on Aba Moro’s “Black List”.
    Then he goes on: “And if this preacher that you talk about for instance did not fall within the list of people black listed for their activities that are inimical to internal security”, then the “this preacher you talk about” MUST be issued with an entry visa. The inference here is Aba Moro is an ignoramus of a monumental dimension. He lacks a clear idea of the security risk profile of “this preacher you that you talk about”. All the big “IFs” clearly indicate that Aba Moro may not even have a “Black List” after all. Or even if he does have one, he has no idea if the apostle of human carnage is listed therein. His convoluted, tongue-twisting “If he is preaching and the content of what he has submitted for the granting of visa that will not undermine the security of the country, then certainly we will grant him the visa. That is the purpose we have achieved here” submission is an absolute, ass-hole argument. You need to pick his jelly-brain to figure out what he is talking about. You may be shocked he confidently believes it is a compelling case for a notoriously dangerous islamic terror ideologue to give pep-talks to Boko Haram terrorists, right under our noses, right in our backyard.
    Aba Moro must not be allowed to stake his gamble of “IFs” on this country. We can ill-afford the risk of trying out this “if content of what he has submitted for the granting of visa that will not undermine the security of the country” ramble. It is clear that Aba Moro is one more note in a symphony being orchestrated in recent days and scripted by the President’s detractors. The first note was the “corruption Body-language” cliche…then the phantom “$14b” NNPC missing money….followed by the puerile 18-page seditious rabble-rouser and Abdulateef’s serialized sermons on the contents.
    Apparently frustrated by the President’s uncanny ability to soak up all they throw at him, ……. then comes the next joker -Aba Moro’s “RELIGION” monkey wrench, aimed to instigate a final pitched battle between the President and the mullahs of the awusa north. This strategy is the backdoor reincarnation of Sanusi’s “ISLAMIC BANK” perfidy that set the tone for the religious acrimony tearing this country apart. It emboldened islamists’ Boko Haram army and enthroned the tyranny of jihadist impunity. That is what it is all about since they all know that this President will veto an idiotic plan to set the entire place ablaze.
    Now here are the questions: Would Aba Moro grant entry visa to Al Zawahiri should his name be missing from his so-called “BLACK LIST”? Must Philips come here in the middle of heat of our throes with islamic scourge? Has the ‘black stone’ now been relocated to Nigeria, such that this country has taken the place of Mecca? How would the community of nations regard Nigeria as partner in the war against terrorism? Would the International Community be encouraged to help Nigeria root out Boko Haram… with this out-of-line behavior? Meanwhile, Nigeria is only inches away from the international black-list as an exporter of terror, courtesy of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale all Nigerian Islamic terrorists. The way it is, Pakistan is like heavenly peace a choice holiday resort, compared to present-day Nigeria human slaughterhouse. …all courtesy of senseless northern mullahs.
    It is mind-boggling that Aba Moro, who calls himself Federal Minister trusted with responsibility to regulate internal security, would want to browbeat the entire nation into entertaining a visit he schedules for a most dangerous jihadist ideologue. The man does not even care about his discourtesy in doing so in atrocious English expression. One wonders where they dig up these crude, unrefined materials that are total embarrassment to the nation. Aba Moro’s sorry ass needs to be fired right away by this President for an act that is patently disloyal, subversive and treacherous. He MUST do it ….N-O-W!!! The meathead must be stopped from using a sacred position trusted on him to stir up internal religious strife likely to claim more lives of innocent Nigerians.

  • fld8778

    If truly Dr. Bilal Philips preaches terrosim dont you think that the countries that refused him visa (Australia, Germany and UK) would have let him into their countries to arrest him instead of just banning him? The reason why Germany banned him was his preaching against homosexuality. In fact, Dr. Bilal Philips is the kind of Islamic Preachers that Boko Haram members are afraid of because he has the scholastic qualification to intellectully and ideologically expose their ignorance of real Islamic teachings. Thats why Boko Haram recently killed a similar Islamic scholar in zara name Albani (zaria) and also Sheik Jafar in Kano in 2007. Mr. Jaiyeola Andrews please next do proper reasearch and avoid copy and paste journalism.

  • Sharafudeen Abu Abdillah

    They wish to put out Allaah’s light with their mouths(words), but Allaah will complete the exposition of His light, though the disbelievers hate it {QURA’AN 61 : 8}