New York Police Seek Killer Of Muslim Imam

New york policeNew York City police searched on Sunday for a suspect in the shooting of a Muslim cleric and his associate killed while walking together along a city street after attending prayers at a nearby mosque, authorities said.

A lone gunman approached the men from behind and shot both in the head at close range at about 1:50 p.m. EDT (1350 ET) on Saturday afternoon in the Ozone Park neighborhood in Queens, police said in a statement.

They cited witnesses statements and video surveillance footage for details of the attack in the largely working-class area, home to many Muslims of Bangladeshi heritage.

Witnesses told police they saw the assailant, dressed in a dark shirt and blue shorts, fleeing the shooting scene with a gun in his hand, police said.

Early on Sunday, police released a sketch of a male suspect with dark hair, a beard and glasses. Police described him as having a medium complexion. He appeared to be in his 30’s or 40’s.

The victims, identified as Imam Maulama Akonjee, 55, and Thara Uddin, 64, were both wearing religious garb at the time of shooting, police said. They were found by police lying in the street and transported to a local hospital where they were pronounced dead.

The motive for the shooting was not immediately known and no evidence has been uncovered that the two men were targeted because of their faith, but police were not ruling out any possibility, a department spokeswoman said.

Akonjee was carrying $1,000 with him at the time of the attack but the money was not taken, the New York Times reported.

City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito condemned the attacks and called on more witnesses to come forward.

“I am shocked and saddened at the murders,” Mark-Viverito said in a statement. “This kind of hate has no place in our communities.”

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio was closely monitoring the shooting investigation, a spokesman for the mayor said in a statement, and assured the public “the NYPD will stop at nothing to ensure justice is served.”

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil rights and advocacy group known by the acronym CAIR, said Uddin was an associate of the imam.

“These were two very beloved people,” Afaf Nasher, executive director of the New York chapter of CAIR, told Reuters.

In June, CAIR issued a statement calling for Muslim community leaders to consider increasing security at mosques after the massacre at an Orlando nightclub, which the police said was carried out by a man who called himself an “Islamic soldier”

Government’s Primary Role Is To Provide Security, Welfare For The People – Ezekwesili

obyA former Vice President of the World Bank, Oby Ezekwesili, says the primary purpose of government is to provide security of lives and property, as well as improve the welfare of the Nigerian people.

She said this is according to the Constitution of Nigeria and government, which is a system or function that combines political, social and economic actions in order to solve the problems of the people.

Mrs Ezekwesili made this known as a speaker on ‘The Platform’ with the theme, Nigeria, what is in your hands? Tapping into out dead economy, looking beyond our oil driven economy”

Economy Of The Nation

Speaking on the economy of the nation, she said “from the 90s till now the capitalist system has proven to be very enduring in producing global prosperity, as well as national prosperity at all levels of economic management and has not succeeded in delivering”.

With a look at the global reduction in poverty, she noted that China used to suffer from 80% poverty but that since they commenced market reforms, less than 30 years after, China lifted 600 million citizens out of poverty.

“China accounts for most of the global reduction in poverty that we know, they used to have 85% of citizens poor but today it records about 13% poverty,” she told the gathering.

Another country she compared to Nigeria was Singapore, pointing out that the country had sound policies, strong institutions, effective and efficient investment which had built itself to an income of per capital of 55,000 Dollars but today Nigeria has 3,200 Dollars per capital.