A famous Islamic scholar, educationist, and previous Sharia court judge, Dr. Sheik Ahmed Lemu, is dead.
He died early Thursday morning in Minna, the capital of Niger State, according to a short statement released by his son, Nurudeen.
He said “It is with sadness and reverence to Allah that we announce the passing away of our father Dr. Equity Sheik Ahmed Lemu, OFR, in the early hours of today in Minna. Entombment courses of action to be reported later.”
Brought into the world in Lemu town Niger State, the late Sheik was a respected master in Arabic Language, Islamic Studies, Shari’a Jurisdiction and training.
He was educated at London University’s School of African and Oriental Studies where he obtained the certificate of General Education (Advanced Level) in History, Arabic, Hausa and Persian Languages in 1961, and Bachelor’s Degree (Honors) in African and Oriental Studies in 1964.
In a career spanning over 50 years, the late Lemu taught Arabic language, English language and Islamic studies at various schools.
He was appointed Senior Inspector of Education in 1970 and Chief Inspector of Education for Sokoto State in North West Nigeria between 1971 – 1973.
He also served as Technical Director (1974-1975) and Director of Educational Planning (1975-1976) in the State.
In 2009, he was appointed Consultant at Fountain University in Osogbo, Nigeria.
Lemu has also served in the Judiciary, first as a Shar’ia judge at the Court of Appeals in Sokoto and Niger (1976 – 1977) then as Chief Shar’ia Judge at the Court of Appeals in Niger State (1976 – 1991).
Dr. Shaikh Ahmed Lemu was also involved in efforts to tackle security challenges and Islamic extremism, especially in in Northern Nigeria.
He established the Islamic Da’awa (Call) Institute to combat extremism and was a prominent defender of rights of Muslim women.
He was also the Founder and President of the Islamic Education Trust in Nigeria and a member of several other humanitarian societies and endowments that serve Muslims in his country.
He was conferred with the Nigerian National Order by former Nigerian President Abdulsalami Abubakar in 1999 and former Nigerian President Obasanjo in 2001; Honorary Doctorate Degree from Uthman Danfodiyo University (1996); Honorary Doctorate Degree from Osogbo University (2011) and Honorary Doctorate Degree from Al-Hilal University (2013).
He was the Chairman of a Presidential Committee on Post-Election Violence set up by former President Goodluck Jonathan to probe the violence which trailed the announcement of the results of the 2011 presidential election in parts of Northern Nigeria.