- Sultan asks Nigerians to remain united against terror
Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The Secretary to the Government of Federation (SGF), Mr. Boss Mustapha has sought the cooperation of religious leaders in the campaign against further spread of Covid-19 infection across the country.
This is coming as the Sultan of Sokoto, His. Eminence, Saad Abubakar II has urhed Nigerians not to allow themselves to be divided by the terrorists’ antics.
The SGF while speaking at quarterly meeting of the Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC), yesterday in Abuja, urged religious leaders to continue to promote peace and unity in the country.
“At this point, I wish to remind you that the world is under siege from the novel Coronavirus, which has infected over 100,000 people and spread to over 110 countries. This is a global emergency, which the World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared a pandemic. Two cases have been confirmed in Nigeria and containment measures are being taken. We must as a nation, get prepared for tackling the virus collectively to prevent its spread among our population,” he said.
Mustapha also said that the issue of drug and substance abuse still remained a challenge because the menace has continued to ravage the youths, fuel crime, banditry and insurgency.
On the part of government, he said President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the institutional strengthening and reform of existing relevant agencies in the campaign against drug abuse in Nigeria and will launch a National Campaign Against Drug Abuse in the 2nd Quarter of 2020 to underscore his commitment.
Against the background of religious crisis in the country, the SGF cautioned religious groups and organisations against fueling disunity, adding that no one would escape the consequences should crisis envelope the country.
He said the religious leaders should join government in the creation of awareness among their adherents and within the communities using local languages where possible to educate the people on the importance of observing personal hygiene at all times.
“The situation in Nigeria today calls for the deepening of political and religious collaboration at all times. As a body, we must continue to build an environment where prejudice, intolerance, violence and other vices shall remain alien to our culture and practices. We must continue to expose our children to the rich and good values that Africa represents. We must continue to live together and pursue the common good as a community”.
He called on the body to review the state of the nation and recommend ways to improve on the accomplishment of our set objectives.
On his part the President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Rev. Samson Ayokunle urged leaders to unite against the common enemy of the country who are behind the criminality being witnessed in the country.
“We have a common enemy that is troubling us.The way out is for us to go back to contrition, we have to change from a life of sin to righteousness; so, let us come back to God in contrition. If we forsake wickedness in its entirely our nation will be save,” he said.
On his part, the Sultan charged the religious leaders to be alive to their responsibilities, which is to ensure they are honest and always speak the truth.
“We must remember that as religious leaders we have a lot at stake, as religious leaders we must be guided always by our holy books, as religious leaders we must always speak the truth but are we doing so?
“Let us not deceive ourselves, let’s not live in denial that there is no problem in Nigeria; there are problems and there are serious problems. If we identify with ourselves that there is a problem, we have half of the solution and its left for us to look for the second half and that is why we are gathered,” he said.
“If we allow terrorists to come in between us and divide us, then we are finished,” he said.