We Must Prioritise Love for Our Country, Tinubu Appeals to Nigerians at Eid Prayers

•Stresses need to protect integrity of govt, leadership

•First Lady: let’s sustain good deeds exhibited during Ramadan

•Buhari, Shettima, Zulum, Akpabio, Barau, govs, others seek support for leaders

• Atiku, Saraki, PDP, others urge prayers for nation

Deji Elumoye, Chuks Okocha, Sunday Aborisade, Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja, Michael Olugbode in Maiduguri, Hammed Shittu in Ilorin, Segun Awofadeji in Gombe, Ibrahim Oyewale in Lokoja, and James Sowole in Abeokuta

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, yesterday, joined the Muslim faithful in Lagos to observe the 2024 Eid-el-fitri prayers, and seized the opportunity to appeal to Nigerians to prioritise love for their country.

Tinubu urged the citizens to continue to have faith in his government and remain patriotic, saying there is need to also protect the integrity of government and the leadership.

On her part First Lady, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, enjoined Muslims to sustain the good deeds exhibited during the Holy Month of Ramadan.

Prominent Nigerian leaders, including former President Muhammadu Buhari, Vice President Kashim Shettima, and governors, among others, also sought the people’s support for the government of the day.

At the same time, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar; former Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki; and the leadership of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), among other individuals and groups, urged prayers for the country, saying Nigerians should not surrender to despondency.

Speaking with newsmen after the prayers at the Eid Ground at Dodan Barracks, Obalende, Tinubu said the Renewed Hope Agenda of his administration, which was aimed at bringing prosperity to Nigerians, was being diligently implemented.

While encouraging Muslims to extend the values of sacrifice and resilience beyond the fasting period, Tinubu emphasised the need for Nigerians to prioritise the exhibition of love for their country.

He said, “The resilience and sacrifice that we have shown and made during these months should be preserved. Be a kind and cheerful giver.

“We must love our country more than any other country, because that is the only one we have. We must continue to protect the integrity of our government and leadership.

”The Renewed Hope Agenda is alive, well and fine, and Nigerians should continue to be very hopeful. Without hope, there is no salvation. Without hope, there is no development. Without hope, there is no life. Eid Mubarak.”

Earlier, Chief Imam of Lagos, Sheikh Sulaiman Oluwatoyin Abou-Nolla, in his sermon, urged Nigerians to shun all acts of violence, ensure peaceful co-existence, and continue to have faith in the country.

He asked those in leadership positions to remain faithful to their oaths of office and work towards alleviating the suffering of the less-privileged.

“Let us not forget our brothers and sisters in Gaza and other areas of conflict,” the Islamic cleric said.

He offered prayers of God’s guidance, wisdom, and protection for Tinubu and Lagos State Government, and also prayed for peace and stability in the country.

Wife of the president, on her part, rejoiced with the Muslim Ummah in Nigeria on the completion of the Holy Month of Ramadan.

In a release, Mrs Tinubu urged Muslims to sustain the good deeds exhibited during the Holy Month, saying Ramadan is a period of reformation and teachings on how to live a selfless and godly life.

She said, “The lessons learnt during the one month of fasting should not be eroded on the altar of celebration. We should be modest in our celebration and continue to extend love to others.

“Our kindness to one another and service to humanity should extend beyond the month of Ramadan. Let us sustain those virtues of self-purification, sacrifice, self-discipline, and being compassionate to fellow Nigerians. Our priority as a people should include praying for our nation.”

Mrs. Tinubu commended the womenfolk for their sacrifice in preparing meals for their families and generally taking care of the home front during Ramadan, saying their sacrifices would be rewarded by Almighty Allah.

The first lady charged the youth to shun negative acts, channel their energies positively, and join hands with the government towards achieving a greater nation.

Buhari Urges Nigerians to Support Leaders at All Levels

Former President Muhammadu Buhari urged Nigerians to support elected leaders, from the lowest to the topmost, at this crucial point of the country’s democracy.

In a Sallah message in his hometown of Daura, Katsina State, shortly after observing the Eid prayer, the former president congratulated fellow Muslims on the successful completion of the 30-day Ramadan fasting and the performance of the Eid.

He urged “all citizens to support our leaders from the local government level to the highest at the centre in their efforts to transform the development landscape of the nation.

According to him, support for our leaders is a vote for a better tomorrow.

Buhari added, “It is imperative that we stand united in safeguarding the sovereignty and integrity of our nation.”

He called on contestants to political offices “to always ensure a smooth succession from one administration to another without stoking communal tensions and obstructing development, irrespective of political party affiliation”.

Buhari expressed his appreciation to the people of Daura and the state for a warm welcome as indicated by the massive crowd at the Eid prayer ground.

He said he was happy to be in the midst of his people again after completing his term as president in May 2023.

Shettima, Zulum, Others Attend Eid Prayers

Vice President Kashim Shettima, Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, and All Progressives Congress (APC) National Vice Chairman (North), Ali Bukar Dalori, were among dignitaries that attended the two raka’at Eid prayers in Maiduguri.

Imam Idaini of Borno, Shettima Mamman Saleh, led the Eid prayer at the Borno Central Eid ground, Ramat Square, on Wednesday.

Delivering his Khutba (sermon), Imam Idaini counselled the Muslim ummah to continue to observe virtues learnt during the 30-day Ramadan fast.

The Shehu of Borno, Abubakar Ibn Umar Garbai El Kanemi, led members of the Borno Emirate Council to the Eid prayer.

Other dignitaries in attendance included the senator for Borno Central, Barrister Kaka Shehu Lawan, members of the House of Representatives, Secretary to Borno State Government, Hon. Bukar Tijani, Borno State Head of Service, Mallam Fannami, among other top officials and APC executives.

Zulum called on citizens of the state to intensify their prayers for the total restoration of peace in the state and other parts of the country.

He said, “Glory be to Almighty Allah for allowing us to witness this year’s Eid festival. I urge the people of Borno State to intensify their prayers for peace to reign in Borno and Nigeria.

“I also want to urge the people of Borno State to be law-abiding and patient with the government. We are doing everything possible to reduce the hardship faced by our people.”

Shehu of Borno, Abubakar Ibn Umar Garbai Elkanemi, organised the durbar procession to commemorate this year’s Eid-el-fitri festival.

The dubar, a traditional horse match, is observed annually in Borno State with traditional title holders mounting horses in a parade.

Shettima and Zulum, accompanied by other senior government officials, attended the festival.

Atiku, PDP: Let Leaders Show Compassion to Nigerians

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar called on leaders to approach leadership with compassion and show empathy to the less-privileged.

The leadership of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) urged Nigerians not to surrender to despondency.

In a message on his verified X account, the PDP presidential candidate in the last general election said those in authority should show more compassion to the people.

Atiku stated, “The completion of Ramadan should cause a reflection on those in positions of authority to show more compassion to the people.

“The requirement of forbearance and compassion between the leaders and the people are the lessons to be learnt about this year’s Ramadan, in accordance with the teachings of noble Prophet Muhammad (SAW).”

PDP, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba, counselled Nigerians not to surrender to hopelessness or allow the hardship and misery in the country to weaken their love and support for one another. Rather, he said, citizens should remain resolute in their hope and pursuit of a better, secure and prosperous nation.

The party congratulated Nigerians, especially the Muslim Ummah, on the Eid-el-fitri celebration, urging them to allow the virtues, values and lessons observed, inculcated and imbibed during the Holy Ramadan fasting to guide their everyday lives.

The party said Eid-el-fitri offered Nigerians the divine pathway to re-dedicate themselves to a life of love, forgiveness, abnegation, restraint, tolerance, temperance, unity, mutual understanding, peaceful co-existence, care and compassion for one another, and most importantly, absolute faith, trust, and total obedience to the Will and command of the Almighty Allah in all our dealings.

PDP said, “It is, therefore, imperative for leaders at all levels to use the occasion of the Eid-el-fitri for a deep soul-searching that re-awakens the virtues of honesty, transparency, justice, fairness and pursuit of the wellbeing of the citizens in the discharge of their duties, especially at this critical time in the life of our nation.

“Our party also calls on all good-spirited Nigerians and organisations to use the occasion to further extend the hands of love to the less-privileged, the dislocated and the hurting, so that the joy of Eid-el-fitri can reach all.”

Ilorin Emir, Saraki Seek Prayers for Leaders to Overcome Insecurity

Emir of Ilorin and Chairman, Kwara State Traditional Rulers Council, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari, yesterday, urged Muslim Ummah and other Nigerians to continue to pray for the country’s leaders in order to overcome the incessant kidnappings and other forms of insecurity facing the nation. The monarch stated this in his Sallah message to the people of Ilorin Emirate and beyond delivered at the Ilorin Central Eid praying ground to mark the 2024 Eid-el-fitri celebration.

He advised citizens to always support leaders with fervent prayers and obedience in order to deliver on their mandates.

Gambari stated that despite the challenges facing the nation, the people of Ilorin Emirate were living in peace and harmony without rancour, “which necessitates us to remain grateful and prayerful always”.

Yesterday, also, former Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, expressed hope that the valuable lessons learned during Ramadan would guide the Muslim Ummah on the path of righteousness, piety, and devotion.

Saraki also expressed belief that the prayers and supplication offered during the 30 days Ramadan period had been granted by Allah, for a positive turnaround.

A statement by his Press Officer on Local Matters, Abdulganiyu Abdulqadir, said the former senate president spoke from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, where he was taking part in Umrah, the lesser Hajj.

Saraki expressed joy and gratitude to Allah for the opportunity to partake in this year’s Ramadan fasting.

He performed Umrah with his personal driver, Mr. Shuaibu, and some other personal aides.

Saraki stated that he and his entourage devoted time to pray for families, friends, loved ones, his home state, Kwara, and the nation as a whole.

Akpabio, Barau, Senators Urge Muslims to Pray for Peace, Unity

President of the Senate, Godswill Akpabio, his deputy, Jibrin Barau, the southern and northern senators’ forums, as well as the minority caucus of the red chamber congratulated Muslims in Nigeria on the successful end of the 30 days Ramadan fast.

Akpabio, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Hon. Eseme Eyiboh, said, “Islam is a religion of peace and if its adherents go to God in prayer with sincerity, He will surely answer.

“I, therefore, ask you to pray for your leaders and the peace and unity of our dear country. I believe with your prayers Nigeria will overcome its current challenges.”

Barau, in his statement, prayed Allah to accept supplications, prayers and the good deeds of the Ummah during the blessed month.

The Kano senator, who is the acting Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, urged  all Muslims to sustain the lessons of the Holy Month and always reflect it in their daily activities.

Senate Leader, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele, charged Nigerians, particularly Muslims, to allow the lessons from Ramadan “guide our approaches to conducting businesses; running governments at all levels and discharging civic responsibilities on a daily basis”.

The APC chieftain, in his goodwill message, rejoiced with the Muslim faithful as they celebrated Eid-el-fitri.

He charged the citizens to adhere to the core essence of Eid-el-fitri, “which in entirety forbids the sabotage of government policies, the quest for profiteering, the exploitation of our collective resources and the sponsoring of internal disharmony, all in the name of selfish interest and political aspiration”.

In their statement, the Southern Senators’ Forum extended their warmest greetings to all Nigerians, particularly Muslim brothers and sisters, on the successful completion of Ramadan fast and the commemoration of Eid-el-fitri.

Their message was signed by Chairman, Southern Senators’ Forum, Senator Mukhail Adetokunbo Abiru, and Publicity Secretary, Senator Asuquo Ekpenyong.                                           

Northern Senators Forum through its Chairman, Senator Abdulazis Yar’Adua, in a statement, extended its heartfelt greetings to Muslim brothers and sisters at home and across the globe as Muslims celebrated Eid-el-fitri.

They urged Nigerians to persist in their endeavours to foster a peaceful and cohesive society that cherished the principles of liberty, human dignity, and prosperity for all.

Similarly, Minority Caucus of the red chamber, through its leader, Senator Abba Moro, extended warm greetings to the Muslim Ummah in Nigeria on this year’s Eid-el-fitri celebration.

Moro urged Muslims to use the occasion to pray for peace and security in the senatorial district and Nigeria at large, even as he enjoined them to reach out to the less-privileged.

Yahaya Joins Emir Abubakar, Others to Observe Eid-el-fitri Prayers

Gombe State Governor, Alhaji Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya, joined the Emir of Gombe,  Alhaji Dr Abubakar Shehu Abubakar III, and other Muslim Ummah in the state to observe the  two Rakaat Eid-el-fitri prayer to mark the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

The Eid prayer held at the main Eid ground in Gombe was led by Deputy Chief Imam of Gombe, Ustaz Aliyu Hammari. It was attended by top government functionaries, including Speaker and members of Gombe State House of Assembly and heads of security agencies, among others. 

Yahaya, who is also Chairman of Northern States Governors’ Forum, had earlier in his Sallah goodwill message to the people of Gombe State, rallied the citizens towards collective prayer, unity and resilience amid prevailing economic challenges. He assured the people that the current difficulties were transient and better days laid ahead, with Nigeria emerging stronger.

He also emphasised the importance of integrity in combating societal ills.

Ododo Felicitates with Muslims, Emphasises Peace, Love, Unity

Kogi State Governor, Usman Ododo, charged Muslim Ummah to preach peace, unity, love and always reflect the teaching of the holy month of Ramadan.

Ododo made the call while speaking at the end of two rakats obligatory prayers at OKene Eidel praying ground in Okene Local Government Area of Kogi State.

The governor, who felicitated all Muslims on the successful completion of the 30 days Ramadan fasting, urged Nigerians to be patient and continue to pray for the leaders.

He explained that peace, unity, love were sacrosanct at the this critical moment, adding that all well-meaning Nigerians should always remember to give out to the less-privileged as mark of love for them.

Comptroller General of Immigration Felicitates Nigerians, Migrants

Comptroller-General of Immigration, Kemi Nandap, felicitated all Nigerian citizens and migrants in the country on the conclusion of this year’s Ramadan and the Eid-el-fitri celebration.

A statement by Public Relations Officer of Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Kenneth Udo, read, “As Muslims around the world conclude this year’s Ramadan fast and observe Eid-el-fitri celebration, the Comptroller General of Immigration, Kemi Nanna Nandap, extends her hearty felicitations to all Muslim officers and men of the NIS, Nigerian citizens, and, indeed, migrants who are resident in the country.

“The CGI, while saluting His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and the Minister of Interior, Dr. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, on this auspicious occasion, also commends all adherents of Islam who, through shared commitment and dedication, took time out to fast and pray for the security and welfare of the Nigerian state.

“The Immigration Boss charged all Nigerians to continually promote godly virtues on a daily basis.”

Wike Urges Residents to Extend Acts of Charity, Tolerance Beyond Sallah

Federal Capital Territory (FCT) minister, Nyesom Wike, urged residents of the FCT not to limit acts of charity, love, and tolerance as exemplified during the holy month of Ramadan. Rather, they should be practised and instilled in the people’s daily lives, Wike said.

He said the end of Ramadan should also not signal an end to prayers.

The minister made the appeal in his Sallah message to FCT residents yesterday.

Wike advised FCT residents to continue to offer supplications to the Almighty God for the country and its leaders for divine wisdom and guidance, especially as they worked to overcome current challenges.

Wike congratulated the residents, especially the Muslim Ummah, for successfully completing this religious obligation. He prayed that the supplications made to Almighty Allah would be answered.

Uzodimma: Religion Shouldn’t Be Barrier to Cohabitation

Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodimma, told Muslims and Nigerians, in general, that “religion should not be a barrier to their cohabitation”.

Uzodimma advised Nigerians to take advantage of the spiritual blessings from the period of fasting and reflection to unite themselves and also seek the unity of the country, in the spirit of the Renewed Hope Agenda of President Bola Tinubu.

The governor stated, “As Muslims in Imo, we must be united. As Muslims in Nigeria, we must also be united. Irrespective of religion, we should be our brothers and sisters’ keepers.

“I enjoin the leadership of the Muslims in Imo State to unite. If you unite, you will see the benefit to our state and country. Also, be law-abiding, both Muslims and Christians.”

The Seriki Hausa/Muslim in Imo State, Alhaji Auwal Baba Suleiman, who spoke during a banquet organised in his honour by Uzodimma to mark this year’s Eid-el-fitri, added that despite being a Christian, Uzodimma had dealt so kindly with them that they had lost count of his good deeds.

Fubara Laments Dilapidated Condition of Rivers Primary Schools

Rivers State Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, regretted that about 75 per cent of primary schools in the state were without teachers, while 90 per cent of such schools were dilapidated.

Fubara expressed concern over the state of the elementary schools, and explained that he became aware of the deplorable state of the schools when a firm, New Global, in its bid to partner his administration to enhance the capacity of teachers, performed field assessment of personnel that they intended to train.

Speaking, yesterday, when he received a delegation of leaders of the Muslim community in the state on Eid-el-fitri Sallah visit to Government House, Port Harcourt, Fubara said the report from the field was very disappointing because the firm did not find the number of teachers that should be trained.

The governor emphasised the crucial place that primary school occupied in the educational journey of any child in shaping character, instilling essential skills, and fostering quest for learning, which he said had been ignored in the past.

Fubara assured that his administration, having its focus firmly on education, health and agriculture sectors, would ensure a change in what had been identified.

Earlier, in his address, leader of the delegation and Vice President-General, Rivers State Council for Islamic Affairs, Alhaji Nasir Uhor, thanked the governor for his financial support that enabled them to participate in Hajj last year, and his inclusive policy that had given the community a sense of belonging.

Uhor assured Fubara that the Muslim community would not relent in partnering the governor and his government. He emphasised that they were solidly behind him, and approved of his people-oriented policies and programmes.

Obaseki Celebrates, Assures Muslims Better Support

Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, yesterday, joined Muslim faithful in the state to celebrate Eid-el-fitri after the successful completion of the Ramadan fast.

Obaseki, who hosted Muslims at Government House, Benin City, assured them of better collaboration and support.

Obaseki was accompanied by Edo State Head of Service (HOS), Dr. Anthony Okungbowa, Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Chris Nehikhare, and other top government functionaries.

The governor said, “As a government, we must continue to work with religious leaders because citizens in distress can easily meet religious leaders, as they know and can deal with issues swiftly. So, we must cooperate with religious bodies.

“We know things are difficult for citizens, but we will continue to pray to God to see us through this trying period and will overcome like we did during COVID-19. There is hunger in the land and we will continue to support palliatives and others.

“I thank the Chief Imam of Benin and Muslim faithful in Edo, as in the last seven and half years, you have been a pillar and have helped us consolidate and renew our beliefs as Edo people. I thank you for the peace you have continued to help us maintain in our state.”

Kashamu Shares Food Packages, Cash for Children, Physically Challenged, Aged

Ogun State House of Assembly member representing Ijebu North Constituency 1, Hon Rasheed Kasham, yesterday, distributed food packages to children, physically challenged and aged in his constituency.

The food packages, comprising noodles, rice and cash, were distributed to no fewer than 4,000 beneficiaries after the Eid prayer held near his father’s house at Ijebu-Igbo, headquarters of Ijebu North Local Government Area.

The son of the late Senator  Buruji Kashamu was elected on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and is Minority Whip  of the Ogun State House of Assembly.

He said giving out relief packages and support to people had been the legacy of the Kashamu family, promising that the death of his father would not be the end of the legacy.

Related Articles