By Our Reporters

ON the lips of governors, religious and Labour leaders among others, yesterday, were words of peace, caution, and tolerance to ensure stable polity and unity as Muslims celebrate Eid-el-Kabir.

According to them, the occasion calls for sober reflection, prayers, and actions that will address Nigeria’s myriad of challenges especially the flickering flames of insecurity.

Release Sowore now, Reps minority caucus tells Buhari

Indeed, the Minority Caucus of the House of Representatives took the call further by urging President Muhammadu Buhari to release Publisher of Sahara Reporters and convener of the #RevolutionNow protests, Mr Omoyele Sowore from detention.

The caucus also asked the president to focus attention on economic and security challenges facing the country.

The caucus said that their demands were hinged on the spirit of Eid-el-Kabir, which entails the display of love and sacrifices to humanity.

Sowore, a 2019 presidential candidate was arrested in Lagos penultimate Saturday by operatives of the Department of State Service, DSS, which has obtained a court order to hold him for 45 days to properly investigate his call for a “revolution.”

In their goodwill message to the Muslim faithful issued by the Minority Leader, Hon. Ndudi Elumelu, the caucus also called on Nigerians to imbibe the spirit of love, forgiveness, and sacrifice in order to move the nation forward.

The message read in part: “The House Minority Caucus felicitates with the Muslim faithful at Eid-el-Kabir. We also call on our Muslim brothers and sisters to use the occasion of Eid-el-Kabir to pray for the peace and well-being of our nation. There is the need to reflect on and imbibe the exemplary legacies of the Prophet Mohammed, especially his life of love, forgiveness, and sacrifice.

“In the same vein, we urge President Muhammadu Buhari to order the release of the activist, Mr Omoyele Sowore, in the spirit of Eid-el-Kabir and in deference to democracy. Nigeria is currently besieged by enormous economic and security challenges and we expect the Federal Government to direct its attention, energies, and state resources at surmounting them.”

It calls for sober reflection – Labour

On its part, the Organised labour urged all Nigerians to imbibe the spirit of Eid-el-Kabir for a greater and self-renewing Nigeria.

President of the Nigerian Labour Congress, NLC, Comrade Ayuba Wabba in his Sallah message in Abuja, while congratulating the Muslim faithful, said Eid-el-Kabir represents total and unquestioning obedience to Allah’s command and ultimate sacrifice, love (through sharing), humility, peace and good neighbourliness.

“We do believe this Eid-el-Kabir has come at a time of great challenges, both economic and social, challenges that threaten our common bond and values that hold us together. It therefore offers us a great opportunity for deep reflection and rededication of our lives. In light of this, we urge all Nigerians, and not just Muslims, to imbibe the spirit of Eid-el-Kabir for a greater and self-renewing Nigeria.”

Abaribe, Ekweremadu, Alimikhena call for unity, peaceful coexistence

Senate Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Abia South, urged Nigerians to shun acts that could affect the unity and peaceful co-existence of Nigerians.

Immediate past Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ike Ekweremadu and former Deputy Chief Whip of the Senate, Senator Francis Alimikhena, All Progressives Congress, APC, Edo North also called for peace and urged all Nigerians to put the country above personal interests.

In separate messages in Abuja to felicitate with Muslim faithful on the occasion of the celebrations, Abaribe, Ekweremadu and Alimikhena congratulated the adherents of the faith and urged them to continue to pray for development, security in the country and peaceful coexistence of her people.

Abaribe noted that the country “is passing through a very difficult phase occasioned by a scary security situation never seen before but with a prayer of Nigerians and honest application of laws by her leaders this shall pass and we shall return to the path of peace and sustained economic development.”

Ekweremadu, in a statement by his Media Aide, Uche Anichukwu, enjoined all Nigerians to pursue the virtue of justice and unity, noting that no country could make appreciable progress without such virtues among the leaders and the citizenry.

In his message, Alimikhena, who is now the Chairman, Senate Committee on Customs, Excise and Tariff asked Muslims to emulate the virtuous life of total obedience, love, justice and self-sacrifice of Prophet Ibrahim, which he described as the entire essence of Eid-el-Kabir celebration.

CAN call for reflection on Nigeria’s problems

In its message, the Christian Association of Nigeria CAN call on Nigerians to use the occasion to reflect on Nigeria’s challenges with a view to building peace across religious and ethnic divides.

CAN President, Rev. Samson Ayokunle, made the call in a Sallah message signed by Evangelist Samuel Kwamkur, the national director, Legal and Public Affairs of the umbrella Christian body.

Also read: Eid-el-Kabir : Ugwuanyi felicitates with Muslims, prays for peace, nation’s security

The message read in part: “This is a period for deeper reflection on the challenges of Nigeria and the need to build confidence in one another by deliberate show of love for peacebuilding.

“We urge Muslims and indeed all Nigerians to be reminded that we have no other nation to call ours beside Nigeria hence the need for all well-meaning Nigerians to be patriotic and support the fight against insurgency, kidnapping and all forms of insecurity and criminality bedevilling Nigeria.

“It is our hope and prayers that the challenges of our nation will very soon be a thing of the past as Nigerians renew their commitment to God at this trying moment. We call on the government to do everything to rightly curb criminality in the nation through more technologically based surveillance and prompt action against violence in any disguise.”

It’s season of sacrifice, selflessness – AbdulRazaq

While felicitating with Muslims, Kwara State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, in a message by his Spokesman, Rafiu Ajakaye, said: “The message of this season is that of sacrifice, selflessness, and total submission to the will of God as exemplified by not just Prophet Ibrahim, the father of all Abrahamic faith, but also Prophet Muhammad. As faithful, it is not enough to offer animals in sacrifice. We are in fact required to translate these qualities to our day-to-day living.”

Saraki seeks an end to insecurity, strengthening national unity

Former Senate President, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki urged Nigerian Muslims to devote their prayers during the Eid-el-Kabir to the Almighty Allah to end the numerous security challenges facing the country and further restore unity among the citizenry.

In a message by his Special Adviser (Media and Publicity), Yusuph Olaniyonu, he noted that the period of the Eid-el-Kabir which also coincided with the final hajj rites in the holy land provides an opportunity for Nigerian Muslims in Mecca and the ones at home to devote their supplication to Allah on the issue of full restoration of peace and unity across the country.

Oyetola charges youth to shun crime, embrace creativity

Osun State Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, charged youths to shun the syndrome of cutting corners to achieve success.

Speaking after voluntary prayers at the Osogbo central praying ground, he said: “The youth do not have to take a short cut, especially the ‘Yahoo-Yahoo’ fraud path because once they are caught, it is always the end of the road for them. They should endeavour to acquire knowledge, training that would last a lifetime and lead to legitimate success.”

Ishaku, Deputy seek support against insecurity

Governor Darius Ishaku of Taraba State and his Deputy, Haruna Manu, have urged Muslims in the state to uphold the virtue of tolerance as they coexist with people of other faith in the state.

The duo, who gave the charge in their separate Eid messages, also solicited for the support of citizens of Taraba against mutual suspicion, which they said has led to ethnic tension and bloodletting in parts of the state.

Said Ishaku: “Let us resolve on this auspicious occasion to support the efforts of the government to ensure lasting peace throughout the state. I use this occasion to appeal to all the warring factions in the Southern parts of this state to sheath their sword in the name of God and allow peace to reign among them. I urge them to support the numerous peacebuilding measures jointly put in place by my administration and that of my Benue State counterpart.”

Makinde fetes Muslims

Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State wants Muslims to imbibe the virtues of Prophet Ibrahim, who, in obedience to God’s directive, was ready to sacrifice his only son.

He admonished the Muslim Ummah in the state to reflect on the significance of the celebration, which he said bordered on encouraging piety, sacrifice and love, noting that without these, no state or society could advance.

Governor Makinde, in a Sallah message issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Taiwo Adisa, stated that: “The significance of the season should be beyond the festivities. The real essence is to encourage piety, total commitment to Allah, self-discipline and sacrifice.”

Abide by lessons of obedience, Ihedioha tells Muslims

Imo State Governor, Emeka Ihedioha, yesterday, advised the Muslims to abide by the lessons of the teachings of obedience of the Islamic religion as they celebrate Eid-el-Kabir.

Ihedioha spoke in Owerri, through his Special Adviser on Media, Steve Osuji, adding that obedience and sacrifice are crucial in the process of nation-building.

He went further to say that there is a need to obey the laws of the land in everything one does as such would lead to peaceful co-existence of the citizens.

“When we do these, the current wind of discontent and threats of disintegration shall blow away and peace and tranquillity will reign,” he added.

Reject revolution, Gov Sule, Speaker begs Nigerians 

The Governor of Nasarawa State, Abdullahi Sule and Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Ibrahim Abdullahi, have appealed to Nigerians reject the calls for a revolution in the interest of peace and unity of the country.

Governor Sule and Abdullahi in their separate Eid-el-Kabir messages issued by their media Aides, Yakubu Laimai and Jibrin Gwamna, urged Nigerians to pray for the country to overcome the various challenges confronting the country. The governor further reiterated his administration’s commitment to uplifting the state through the expansion of its economy and ensuring that the state reclaims its pace-setter status in different sectors.

Lagos Deputy Gov, clerics raise concerns over banditry, kidnapping

Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, and Chief Imam of Lagos, Sheik Sulaimon Abu-Nolla, yesterday, joined thousands of Muslims to observe the Eid-il-Kabir prayer, raising concerns that kidnapping, terrorism and banditry and other illicit acts were not part of Islam.

They warned that no one should hide behind the religion to engage in extremism, kidnapping, terrorism and other illicit acts because Islam negates killing of one another.

The concerns were raised at the end of the Eid prayer observed at the Dodan Barracks Praying Ground, Obalende, Lagos, where they were joined by former Federal Commissioner for Works, Mr Femi Okunnu, Oba of Lagos, Rilwanu Akiolu and others.

Hamzat said: “Islam forbids killing, kidnapping and other vices that bring unrest to the country. For instance, if anyone says Allahu Akbar and kills another person, it is either the person is insane or does not understand the tenets of the religion.”

Earlier, Abu-Nolla stressed that every Nigerians especially Muslims must establish structures that ensure peace and assist law enforcement agencies to boost security in their community.

“Islam has called on us to establish peace, justice, righteous act and ensure the security of lives property because terrorism, extremism transgression, kidnapping and killing are all forbidden for Muslim believers.”

Let’s remember our soldiers making sacrifices – Zulum

Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum, on his part, called on citizens in the state and other Nigerians to dedicate the Sallah period to remembering and praying for soldiers, other security agencies, the Civilian JTF, hunters and vigilantes, who are currently fighting Boko Haram insurgents through ground and air operations.

Zulum made the call in his a message by his Special Adviser on Public Relations and Strategy, Malam Isa Gusau.

“With the Eid-IL-Kabir being about faith and sacrifices in obedience to Allah, citizens should without losing focus on spiritual essence, also reflect very deeply, that even as we all gather in exciting congregations, share moments with our loved ones, exchange visits and gifts with families and friends, there are soldiers, policemen, other armed forces in the para-military and the DSS, volunteers from the Civilian JTF, hunters and vigilantes who are in war fronts sacrificing their safety, sacrificing proximity to their loved ones and sacrificing all the Sallah excitements mainly to ensure that those of us who celebrate the festivities, do so in an atmosphere of sustained peace.

“As we celebrate, each of us owes these patriotic soldiers, other armed forces and volunteers portions of our time to remember and pray that Allah keeps all of them safe and make them consistently victorious over the Boko Haram insurgents. Besides prayers, I appeal to citizens to share whatever they can with families of fallen soldiers, policemen, civilian JTF, hunters and vigilantes within their reach, in recognition and appreciation of the sacrifices made by their breadwinners to help in Borno’s desperate search for peace.”

Abide by lessons of obedience Ihedioha tells Muslims

Imo State Governor, Emeka Ihedioha, yesterday, advised the Muslims to abide by the lessons of the teachings of obedience of the Islamic religion as they celebrate Eid-el-kabir.

Ihedioha spoke in Owerri, through his Special Adviser on Media, Steve Osuji, adding that obedience and sacrifice are crucial in the process of nation-building.

He went further to say that there is a need to obey the laws of the land in everything one does as such would lead to peaceful co-existence of the citizens.

“When we do these, the current wind of discontent and threats of disintegration shall blow away and peace and tranquillity will reign” he added”

Ortom urges Muslims to intensify prayers for unity, peace

Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State called on Muslims to intensify prayers for the unity and peace of the country as they celebrate this year’s, Eid-el-Kabir.

The Governor in a statement yesterday by his Chief Press Secretary, CPS, Terver Akase, noted that there was no alternative to peace, stressing that it was only in an atmosphere devoid of violence that meaningful development could take place.

“It is the duty of religious organisations to always call on God to intervene in the affairs of the country and cause peace to prevail. It is, however, an unfortunate situation where security operatives have become victims of attacks, a development that calls for worry and deserves to be urgently addressed.”

Governor Ortom advised Muslims to be tolerant and live harmoniously with people of other faiths and commit themselves to the Holy Prophet’s injunctions of piety, honesty and charity.

According to the two leaders, “revolution was not a solution to the problems confronting the country, but what Nigerians need now is unity, patriotism and fervent prayers to take the country to the next level of development.”

Adebayo seeks more commitments to nation-building

A Minister -Designate and former Governor of Ekiti State, Otunba Adeniyi Adebayo, while saluting Noting that part of the obligations of any citizen to his nation is to pray for the survival of his country and seek God’s guidance for the leaders, he the celebration is an opportunity for Muslims to pray for Nigeria to be at peace and attain development.

“Islam is synonymous with peace and every celebration under this umbrella represents peace and it is by this our Muslim brothers must act to promote national cohesion. Peaceful dispositions and co-existence among citizens is a catalyst for growth and development. Any nation where citizens don’t value love can’t progress and this must guide our actions all the time,” he said.

Adeniran, IPAC felicitate with Muslims

Former Minister of Education and acting National Chairman of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, Professor Tunde Adeniran has called on Nigerians, particularly the Muslim Ummah to use the occasion of this year’s Eid-el-Kabir to re-dedicate their lives to the service and obedience to God as demonstrated by Prophet Ibrahim.

In a goodwill message, Adeniran emphasized the virtue of faith in God, urging all and sundry to learn from the conduct of Prophet Ibrahim.

In like manner, the National President of Inter-Party Advisory Council, IPAC, High Chief Peter Ameh, tasked Nigerians on unity and brotherhood.

He said in a statement that as we celebrate “we cannot forget our nation in this crucial period of her life, so let us use the opportunity to challenge ourselves on making Nigeria great.”

Vanguard

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