By Musa Na Annabi Sokoto
Some clerics in Sokoto State have called on Nigerians to consider credibility and experience in the forthcoming 2023 general elections.
A cross section of them told our correspondent on Sunday, in Sokoto that it was necessary for the nation to have credible, pious and committed leaders.
Professor Sani Sagir of Physics Department, Usmanu Danfodio University, Sokoto, described leadership as a ”responsibility that required able person who is healthy, physically and mentality fit, intelligent and experience.”
Sagir, who is also the Chief Imam of Maikilishi Jumaat Mosque, in Sokoto and also the National Vice President 1, Jama’atu Izalatul Bid’a wa Iqamatul Sunna stressed the need for matured mind in place of leadership.
”I pity those who are coming out to contest at this crucial situation of Nigeria.
”Leadership is very hard talk, especially in Nigeria, because of insecurity, economic instability and lack of unity.
”Nigeria needs a very good leader with experience, good political will, someone that means well for the country, not someone that will steal public funds.
” A person that will do the right thing, not minding what people will say, as far as it is right and acceptable decision, because as a leader you need to be courageous in doing the right thing always.
” These are the kind of leaders we want at the moment. Now if you look at President Muhammad Buhari, he immensely tried in various sectors, however, because of age, so many things are needed,” he said.
Sagir explained that the vice-president had been proactive though he is not young in recognition of his age as well.
According to him, vice-president to complement President efforts is desirable in leadership to have good and viable subordinates.
He said the President needed ministers and advisers that are proactive and help him like vice-president to achieve more.
Also speaking with our correspondent Sheikh Muhammad Talata-Mafara, said ”a good leader is a person with peoples’ interests at heart, piety and submits himself to improving their living standard.”
Talata-Mafara, a renowned Islamic scholar, who translated many Islamic books, especially those written by Sheikh Usman Bin Fodio, cautioned Nigeians against money politics and selfishness.
He called on Nigerians to consider capability and achievements in supporting any presidential aspirant and other people seeking elective positions.
Sheikh Bilal Jabir-Elkanawy, called on Nigerians to ensure transparency and fairness at the electioneering, while delegates should vote for the most credible candidates at the primaries.
Jabir-Elkanawiy said, ”selling votes against their conscience to the highest bidders or moneybags is dangerous and it is against Islam.
“The credibility of representatives in government starts with pre-election activities that herald the general elections.
“Nigerians need to chose a credible candidate, if political parties fail to chose credible candidates from the primaries, for the masses to make their choices during the general elections in 2023.
” I want to urge all delegates and Nigerians to vote wisely, because of their children, their relatives and for the interest of our great nation, Nigeria,” he said.
The cleric described Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo ”as a leader whose excellence in academics covers most disciplines and relevant to modern development, to tackle the challenges of the nation.”
According to him, people have not witnessed any quarrels or serious misunderstanding with his principal and he is attested to be loyal.
” His vastness in understanding the diverse challenges and how to nip them in bud for a unified Nigeria, through his knowledge on law and humanitarian act was sacrosanct to Nigeria.
“We need to also eliminate vote buying completely from our elections, which is abhorred by the religion.
”I urge the delegates and electorate to shine their eyes and not vote the wrong candidates, because of money,” Jabir-Elkanawiy said.
Another scholar, Malam Abdulmalik Bello-Gado, described Osinbajo as a loyal and dedicated Vice-President, with qualifications Nigerians needed in view of his experience.
Bello-Gado, a Deputy Imam of Gagi community, urged Nigerians to vote with their conscience and steer clear from money politics.