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Tinubu to Nigerians: let’s shun ethnic, religious rivalries

The President spoke at the Dodan Barracks Praying Ground in Lagos after


As Nigerians joined billions of Muslims across the globe to mark Eid Adha yesterday, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu enjoined citizens to shun ethnicity and religious division.


observing the two rakat prayers to mark the major Islamic celebration of sacrifice.


Reports from across the country indicated a peaceful celebration, except for minor incidents, including the interception of a man with a car laden with explosives on Tuesday by the police in Yobe State.


His planned terrorist activity was nipped in the bud.


With the President at the praying ground for his first Eid prayers were his son Yinka, Chief of Staff (CoS) Femi Gbajabiamila, National Security Adviser (NSA) Nuhu Ribadu, Lagos State Deputy Governor Obafemi Hamzat, former Lagos Governor/ex-Minister Babatunde Fashola, Lagos State House of Assembly Speaker Mudashiru Obasa, elder statesman and former Federal Commissioner Alhaji Femi Okunu, and a host of other dignitaries.


Tinubu said: “I thank Almighty Allah for keeping us in good health till today and pray to Him to grant us robust health and prosperity. May our sacrifices turn into prosperity. We have to make the sacrifices and that is clear, we have to.


“But Allah will not give you a burden that you cannot carry. He is there for us. We must have faith in the country. Have faith in ourselves, believing that as citizens of this country, we must join hands to build the nation.


“No religious identity, no tribal identity, let us live with one another in joy and prosperity. Nigeria will see peace and stability and God will grant peace to those of us at the war front.”


The President also prayed for troops on the frontline in the battle against insurgency, saying it is his earnest desire and that of the nation that they emerge victorious.


The Eid prayer, which started at 9 am, was led by the Chief Imam of Lagos State, Sheikh Sulaiman Oluwatoyin Abu-Nolah, who later performed the obligatory slaughtering of a ram at the Praying Ground in memory of the significance of the noble act of Prophet Ibrahim in total obedience to Allah’s command.


Vice President Kashim Shettima observed the prayers at the National Eid ground in Abuja, in company with House of Representatives Speaker Tajudeen Abbas and Deputy Senate President Barau Jibrin.


Before travelling to his hometown Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, Shettima said: “This sacred day is an occasion to reflect on the mercy of Allah, as revealed through the gracious blessings bestowed upon Prophet Abraham and his son, Prophet Isma’il.


“These timeless lessons serve as a guiding light to humanity across generations, reminding us of the limitless trials our Creator presents to us in our path to redemption.


“In embracing these teachings, we find the moral inspiration to be the best versions of ourselves.


“May Allah accept our prayers and sacrifices and forgive our shortcomings. May Allah heal us from whatever afflicts us in our private lives and as a nation, and may this day bring forth enduring unity and progress to our beloved country. Ameen. Happy Eid-ul-Adha.”


Shettima later paid Sallah homage to the Shehu of Borno Ibn Garbai El-Kanemi, in Maiduguri, where he assured Nigerians that the country would survive all its challenges.


He said: “I am here to assure him (the Shehu) of the maximum support of President Tinubu. All the challenges confronting us, we will survive them as a people.”


Shettima told the monarch that all the infrastructural challenges would be addressed, including the Gamboru Ngala, Dikwa and as well as Damboa roads in Borno State.




In Sokoto, the head of Nigeria’s Muslim Ummah, Sultan Sa’ad Abubakar, emphasised the need for a secured Nigeria for the economy to improve.


In his Eid-el-Kabir message to Muslims, Sultan Abubakar also urged Nigerians to pray more for the leaders to succeed.


He said: “Our prayers are always keys toward the success of the leaders. We should sustain the tempo for them to succeed in the tasks ahead. Government should be more committed to strengthening security.


“Security remains the bedrock of any societal development. As such, strengthening it will enable us to excel.”


Sultan Abubakar congratulated Muslims for celebrating the Eid-el-Kabir in good health, urging them to embrace peaceful coexistence.


The attempt by suspected terrorists to wreak havoc in Damaturu, the capital of Yobe State, was thwarted by the police.


A suspect in the explosives-laden car was arrested on his way to the state capital.


Police said although the suspect was arrested, security agencies kept the information away from the public to avoid tension during the celebrations.


A police source said: “We arrested a man with several explosives on his way to Damaturu on the eve of Sallah, but we decided to keep it low so that we don’t cause panic during the Sallah celebrations and also to allow us to get some other members of the syndicate.


“But to our greatest surprise, a senior officer leaked the video. He is under detention and investigation as we speak.”


The Police Public Relation Officer, DSP Dungus Abdulkarim, who confirmed the story, refused to speak further on the matter.


Despite the threat, a large crowd came out at various Eid grounds in Damaturu and across the state to observe the traditional prayers.


Deputy Governor Idi Barde Gubana, Speaker Chiroma Buba Mashio, Secretary to the State Government (SSG) Baba Malam Wali, Head of the State Civil Service Garba Bilal, APC Chairman Mohammed Gadaka and other state and federal lawmakers from the state worshipped at the Central Mosque in Damaturu.


Governor Mai Mala Buni in his Sallah message through his spokesman, Mamman Mohammed, expressed gratitude to Allah for the continued peace in the state.


He assured the people that his second term will “promote self-reliance and employment opportunities for economic growth of our people, especially the youth”.


The governor promised an open door policy for all to participate and contribute to the development of the state irrespective of socio-cultural and political differences, noting that every citizen was a stakeholder.


Buni also congratulated the state contingent performing this year’s Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia and urged them to pray for the state.


He charged traditional, religious and opinion leaders to preach peace and peaceful coexistence among their subjects.


“Let me call on our youth to please celebrate the Sallah peacefully, especially with strict observation of traffic laws. The security agencies are to ensure adherence to law and order for a peaceful and successful Sallah celebration,” Buni said.

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