There is a saying that a notion is unremittingly repeated as the truth, even if it is false the people will ultimately accept it as the truth. This saying cannot be easily dismissed.

One of the most profound debaters on Islamic scripture is Zakir Naik. He is taken as an erudite scholar in the Islamic world view. That world view however requires scholars to do research and find out the truth before they speak. They are not restricted to the memorisation of koranic verses. They are obliged to go to China, Europe and anywhere to learn about matters affecting human civilisation.

What has amazed many people is the claim by Zakir Naik that The Gambia is the fifth Islamic Republic. The reality however is that there is only one legal constitution in The Gambia which states in Chapter 1 subsection (1) that, “The Gambia is a Sovereign Republic. In section 100 subsection (2) paragraph (b) the Constitution states: “The National Assembly shall have no power to pass a Bill to establish any religion as a state religion” Hence no Bill could be passed in parliament which declares religion as a state religion.

He therefore made a big mistake in referring to The Gambia as an Islamic State. It is not. Scholars should not mis-educate. They could only claim to be scholars if they do their research and report their findings. Scholars do not depend on hearsay to conduct analyses and make generalisation. They must rely on facts.

The Gambia is not an Islamic Republic, no matter how many times it is repeated over GRTS that it is. This truth should be conveyed to Professor Naik.