By Ibrahim Hassan-Wuyo
Ahead of the 2023 general elections, Muslim leaders and traditional rulers in Kaduna State have commenced moves to strengthen inter-religious harmony by joining worshippers at the Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) Gospel Church, Lemu Road, Kaduna, on Sunday.
The Chairman, Community Relation Committee of the church, Senator Haruna Azee Zego, said the invitation extended to Muslims within their host community to worship with them was borne out of the love to sustain religious coexitence and commended the Muslim invitees for honouring for coming to the church.
“Their attendance was at the instance of the church in her efforts at strengthening religious harmony and peaceful coexistence among all, regardless of religious differences.
“Some of the Muslims who attended the church service were Nigeriens living within and around the community where the church is located,” he said.
Traditional leaders, who attended the Sunday service, were the District Head of Barnawa, Alhaji Kabiru Zubairu; the Wakilin Shehu Borno, HRH Bata Madaki Auta, and Sarkin Dutse Alhaji Shuaibu Balarebe Abdullahi among others.
Among the Muslim leaders who were in the church and spoke on peaceful and religious coexistence were Sheihk Dahiru Abdullahi, Sheihk Dr. Hamisu Ya’u and Sheihk Shehu Ayotola.
They unanimously agreed that there is no basis whatsoever why Christians and Muslims to fight instead of being each other’s keepers.
“You cannot be said to be a good Muslim if you don’t like your Christain neighbours and vice versa,” they said.
“We should join hands and bring back the good old days where Christians relate with Muslims as brothers and vice versa.
“Muslims and Christians are twins. Christianity and Islam has not changed but Christians and Muslims have changed and people have succeeded to divide the two religion for their selfish gains.
“We must return to olden days where Christains and Muslims see each other as brothers,” they said.
Sheihk Dr. Ya’u, the Executive Secretary of Sultan Bello mosque, said that “the devil is our common problem and we must all unite to fight the devil.
“Humanity should be respected above religion and we should accept each other the way we are.
“We must love one another and not allow politicians to play with our intelligence because the present political dispensation could cause Nigeria a lot of problem.
“We must not allow politicians to use our heads. We must unite together as one and allow politicians to do their things,” he said.
District head of Barnawa, Wakilin Shehu Borno and the Sarkin Dutse all commended ECWA for the good initiative and called on other churches and Islamic bodies to emulate the peace advocacy.
During the Sunday sermon, the Preacher, Mr. Zak Bungwon, said lack of fellowship is the cause of most crisis and called on Christains and Muslims to focus on what bind them together and not what separates.
He said the invitation extended to Muslims to worship with them in a programme tagged “Friends of the Church”, holds annually.
The Senior Pastor of the Church, Rev. Joshua Anyam, said the church is willing more than ever before to relate with their neighbours regardless of their religion to promote peaceful coexistence.
“We do this annually, basically to promote religious and peaceful togetherness among ourselves, and we are thankful that whenever we call they respond in their numbers,” he said.
The Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) represented by Mr. Reuben Buhari said “it is better we live together and survive or live apart and suffer.We must be United.”