By Kingsley Omonobi – Abuja
In commemoration of the International Day of Peace 2022, the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, the 3rd has disclosed that it is not possible for any religion to supercede another religion in Nigeria as God who created the different religion’s in Nigeria did not make mistake.
Rather, Sultan Abubakar disclosed that adherent’s of different religion’s should learn to accommodate one another and realize that it is the same God we all serve.
Speaking as Special Guest of honour at the National Secondary Schools Security Awareness Programme organized by the Alumni Association of the National Defence College (AANDEC) in partnership with the Office of the National Security Adviser and UFUK Foundation in Abuja, the Sultan said, “God see’s all of us as equal’s. Peace is not the absence of war. Peace is just the absence of Justice.
“You cannot eliminate any religion in Nigeria because God who made us, created these religion’s and put us together. Peace is very important for us to progress and develop as a nation, as such we must not let anyone use religion to divide us.”
On activities of bandit’s and terrorist’s which are causing security challenge’s in the country, the Sultan said these bad element’s of the society, their antecedent’s are traceable to bad upbringing and bad parent-hood.
He said Nigerian society like any other society, has both good and bad people, adding that the good people were more than the bad hence, the good people who are in clear majority, should rise against the bad people who are in minority.
His words, “Mentoring young ones who are future leaders remained an important component of peace in the home and the society at large. Parents shouldt start the mentoring from home because if there is peace in the home, then there should be peace outside.
“So you must have peace at home first, because everything starts from home. Your first teacher is your mother from the day you were born, when you came out. They bring you out, cut all the umbilical cord and whatever, wash you clean and dress you up.
“The mother is the one handling you from the time until you start running and working, and maybe even until they die.
Your mother is your first teacher and is the most important part of the home.
“If you have a good home, look for who is the mother; if you have a bad home, look for who is the mother and that is why the mothers are so important in our lives.
“If you have bad children running all over the place, carrying guns, killing people, kidnapping, ransom, or whatever, look at the background”.
Keynote speaker at the occasion and Chairman of Access Bank, Dr. Mrs. Dere Awosika listed Peace, Progress and Civic Responsibility as important attributes which youth’s particularly student’s should imbibe to reshaping their mindset.
She said, “Civic Responsibility entails your involvement in activitie and participation in things that bring about a better society with the foundation being education. This is because when you are informed, you are committed to carrying out function’s for the common good.
“You should have allegiance to God, allegiance to your country. Going by the Coat of Arms of our country and national flag, unity of Nigeria affect’s the progress of Nigeria. Your faith in Nigeria affect’s the progress of Nigeria. So a combination of unity and faith bring’s forth peace in Nigeria”.
Dr. Awosika further told the students/youths that, “Your mindset have to change from what you hear to concentrating on and obeying the rules and laws in Nigeria. Be a good student, join hand’s with others to create a peaceful and progressive society.
On the right’s of children, she said, “You have a right to life and right to life is for all. You have a right to equity. Being equitable means you have a right to be informed about what is good, what to do and what not to do. Be obedient to rules. Right to dignity. Right to worship. Right to privacy and personal liberty is your right”.
Representative of the National Security Adviser, Brigadier General AG Laka lauded AANDEC for initiating the awareness programme noting “it is very apt especially with the myriads of threats in areas that youths are the most vulnerable targets.
“Youths are most vulnerable in the threats environment. Lack of awareness by the youths make them easy prey. Youth’s should be particularly mindful of online recruitment. So be careful who you interact with online” he said.
Over 400 students drawn from 15 Secondary Schools in the FCT participated in the programme which held at the Nigerian Tulip Internationsl College.