The Muslim Students’ Society of Nigeria (MSSN) on Sunday appealed to Muslims to be agents of positive change towards building a brighter future Nigeria in the new Islamic calendar.
Malam Nafi’u Kabiru, the Amir of MSSN, Kebbi State chapter, made the appeal while interacting with newsmen on the commencement of the new Islamic year, 1444 After Hijra (AH) in Birnin Kebbi.
The News Agency of Nigeria recalls that Saturday (July 30, 2022) was declared as 1st Muharram, 1444 AH, meaning the first day of the new Islamic year by the Sultanate Council following the citing of the new crescent moon.
Kabiru said the call became imperative in view of the fact that every citizen had a role to contribute to a brand new Nigeria, saying “therefore, as a Muslim, we must be good ambassadors of the religion towards building a virile, sound and brighter nation”.
He advised Nigerians to sincerely repent and seek divine intervention to get out of current security challenges bedevelling the entire country.
Kabir said: “I want to urge Muslims and non-Muslims alike to sincerely repent to Allah and continue to pray for His merciful intervention on the ravaging insecurity, uncommon inflation, abject poverty and other unfortunate circumstances that engulfed the nation.
“What we are experiencing currently in Nigeria may be as a result of our sins, ungratefulness and atrocities.
“Therefore, we need to sincerely repent, submit ourselves to Almighty Allah, seek for His mercies and bounties because He is ever ready to listen to our prayers and grant all our demands.
” The Amir also admonished Muslims to come out en mass to exercise their civic rights during the upcoming general election and encouraged them to elect the right candidate of their choice.
Kabiru prayed to Allah (SWT) to select the best amongst the presidential candidates who would foster national unity and work assiduously for the masses as well as growth and development of Nigeria.
An expert, Dr Ahmad Nafiu of Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin, has called on parents to enroll their children and wards in schools to learn both Western and Religious knowledge.
The expert made the appeal on Sunday in Ilorin during the 9th Graduation Ceremony of Al-Ikhlas Schools, Wara, Ilorin.
Nafiu, who was represented by Mr Imaam Idris of Fountain University, Osogbo, Osun State, noted that the challenges in the society due to ignorance in western or religious knowledge.
He said that according to Islam, Almighty Allah enjoined all human beings to seek for knowledge no matter how far the distance and in all aspects of life.
“It is written in the holy Qur’an that every human being should seek for knowledge on how to worship Allah, because anyone who does not know Allah can not worship Him. “Islam encourages seeking all forms of knowledge and there are many Islamic scholars that are widely knowledgeable and lucrative in all fields of work,” he said.
The expert said that both Western and Islamic knowledge was very important for all children to be successful in life, as well as know how to be of good conduct in the society.
He however called for equal opportunity for all children to learn western and religious knowledge, irrespective of their race, religion, tribe and nationality.
“Teachers should try as much as possible to monitor their students in terms of psychological, psychomotor and traditional knowledge, in order for them to be good tools for the betterment of the society.
“Psychologically, students should have basic western knowledge to enable them mix freely with other people in the society, while psychomotor knowledge will make them improve on their physical skills.
“The third is the traditional knowledge, which is in two phases, both religious knowledge and house chores, to make children to be qualified and responsible in the society,” he said.
Alhaji Tahjudeen Bolaji, the Proprietor of Al-Ikhlas Schools, Ilorin, said that the school had been in existence for nine years and graduated many qualified students at both Basic and College level.
The proprietor said that the school graduated 37 students from Basic level, after been trained in Western, Islamic and Moral knowledge.
He however urged parents to cultivate the habit of taking their children and wards to school early and pay school fees timely.
The Miyetti Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) says it is committed to ensuring peace and security in Enugu State.
The declaration was made in Enugu on Sunday by its South-East Zonal Chairman, Alhaji Gidado Siddiki.
He told the News Agency of Nigeria that it had become necessary to make such commitment following mutual suspicion between herders and members of their host communities.
He said that contrary to opinions in some quarters, herders who were doing their legitimate businesses in the state were law-abiding and not part of the security breaches in parts of the state.
He said matters of strained relationship between villages in Eha-Amufu in Isiuzo Local Government Area of the state and herders in the area were being sorted out.
“There arose complaints that some herders in the area were involved in criminal activities which caused a strain in the relationship between them and the host community.
“This bad blood escalated to the point of people being attacked and killed by hoodlums and the herders had no option than to relocate to nearby communities in Benue,’’ he said.
Siddiki said it was gratifying, however, that the state government had initiated a peaceful resolution of the mistrust between the two groups.
He said the move involved a strategic meeting between representatives of the villages in Eha-Amufu, herders’ leaders from Benue, Kogi and Enugu states and the chief security officer of Isiuzo Local Government Area. Siddiki said the essence of the meeting was to usher in peace and security which had been elusive in the area.
“I am happy that our people and members of the host communities have finally come together to bring peace and security in that area.
“We commend Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi for creating this synergy that has brought us together to sue for sustainable peace.
“Without this, we will not have access to the host communities.
May God continue to guide the governor until the end of his administration,” Siddiki prayed.
The Force spokesman, CSP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, has called on Nigerians to constantly and urgently share information with security agencies that will help to check insecurity in the country.
Adejobi made the call on Sunday in his verified Twitter handle monitored by the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos.
Adejobi said that security intelligence was not for public consumption, stressing that he detested sharing intelligence in the news or on the social media.
He said that anyone or group of persons who derived pleasure in making security intelligence public did that in ignorance, because such could not be regarded as intelligence, but rather, eye service and sabotage.
“Security agencies work together, gather intelligence and share same amongst themselves for coordinated operations, which will be in the collective interest and benefits for all.
“Nigerians should see and perceive insecurity in the country as a common enemy of the land.
They are to share information on insecurity with the police.
“I am sure that at presentl, the crop of officers in the police wants a better system and security for Nigeria, so they will take any intelligence received serious, ” he said.
Also, the image maker said that there was the need for every sector of the Nigerian society to wake up and do the needful; not to be accusing everyone, everywhere and everyday.
“We need functional approach to tackle our common enemy.
We urge Nigerians to constantly share information with security agencies as soon as possible.
“A stitch in time, saves nine,” he said.
The Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) (www.SECAM.org), the association of Catholic bishops of Africa, Madagascar and the Islands, has elected His Eminence Richard Kuuia Baawobr of Ghana as its new president.
His Eminence Richard Kuuia Baawobr is now the highest ranking member of the Roman Catholic Church in Africa.
The B-roll video, photos, sound clips and interviews in English, French and Portuguese are available to the media free of charge and can be used without restriction and permission: https://bit.ly/SECAM- PDT See the interview with His Eminence Richard Kuuia Baawobr, new president of SECAM: https://bit.ly/3zi4xok See the B-roll: https://bit.ly/3S8725b
Prof. Sunday Bako, the Vice-Chancellor of Taraba State University, Jalingo, says the institution will establish an integrated farm that will provide a model ranch operation.
Bako gave the indication on Sunday while interacting with journalists in Jalingo.
He said that the integrated farm when completed, would produce some of the farm products locally consumed in the state.
He said that the university had engaged experts on the project which would also create employment and revenue for the university.
“We have already begun modalities to establish an integrated farm for the university.
“This farm, among many others things, will make a model ranch operation where it can produce pastures.
“The farm will produce animal feeds, especially for poultry and fish.
“This farm will also make available most of those agricultural products we consume locally,” he said.
Bako said that he would not relent on his efforts to attain his goal of making the university a world-class citadel of learning.
The Ebonyi State Electoral Commission has declared the candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as winners of all the chairmanship and councillorship seats in the local government elections held on Saturday.
The Commission said the ruling party won the polls in all the 13 local government areas of the state.
The Chairman of the state Independent Electoral Commission (EBSIEC), Mr Jossy Eze, made the announcement in Abakaliki on Sunday at the commission’s Headquarters.
According to Eze, APC won all the 13 local government chairmanship seats and the 171 councillorship seats.
He commended the electorate for ensuring that the polls were free and peaceful.
“By the power vested in me by the law, I hereby declare the results of the Chairmanship of each of the 13 local government as follows.
“One, Abakaliki Local Government, Mr Ebere Nwogba of the APC, having satisfied the requirements of the law and scored the majority of valid votes cast at the election, is hereby returned as duly elected.
Other elected APC Chairmen included Chinedu Uburu, Ebonyi LGA; Chidiebere Uzor, Onicha LGA; Chinonso Ajah, Ohaozara LGA; Ibiam Nnajiofor, Afikpo North and Ekuma-Nkama Chima, Afikpo South.
“This Commission has received, considered, validated and adopted the results of each of the 171 cancilliorship of the wards.
That is to say that APC have won in all the wards,” he added.
A Resident, Mrs Mary Akpoke, who spoke with NAN after the reault was announced, decried the development of conducting an election with only one political party.
“Myself, I went out to vote but I do not know the other contesting political parties aside the APC.
This is why the election recorded high level of apathy,” Akpoke said.
Mr Emma Nweke, a teacher also expressed concern over conduct of the elections in favour of only the ruling party, APC.
NAN recalls that the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and other political parties in the state boycotted the LG polls.
Mr Ricky Okorouka, state Chairman of the Party, had said that their decision not to participate in the elections was due to the refusal of the electoral body to reduce the N1 million and N200,000 nomination fees imposed for Chairmanship and Cancillorship.
Mr Chika Nwoba, Publicity Secrectary of the Peoples Democractic Party (PDP) in Ebonyi, described the elections as “one man-show”.
According to Nwoba, PDP is not part of the elections held on Saturday.
Mr Uburu Chinedu, Chairman-elect, Ebonyi Local Government Area, commended the electoral commission and pledged he would focus more on human capital development.
As 2023 general elections draw near, some Nigerians in Diaspora have called on the youths to refrain from vote buying and explore the strength of togetherness in electing leaders of their choice.
They spoke during a 2nd edition of the Virtual Youth Summit organised by the Nigerian Diaspora Organisation Americas (NIDOA) in junction with the Nigeria Diaspora Network (NDN) and monitored by the News Agency of Nigeria Saturday night.
NAN reports that the summit, organised by NIDOA and NDN, was titled: “The Future of Nigeria: Your Vote and Your Right.
” The groups are non-political organisations, working to ensure the development of Nigeria at home and abroad.
Speaking, Dr Nelson Aluya, Chairman, Nigerian American Public Affairs Committee, USA (NAPAC USA), said Nigerian youths need to connect with one another because power is most effective when concentrated.
According to him, your vote, obviously, is your strength.
“And the votes that you come together to cast will determine eventually who leads you.
“You and I have to get it done,” he said.
Aluya, who is s also the Immediate-past president of New Jersey Medical Association (NJMA), said it was time Nigerian youths begin to talk together to carve a new future for the country.
He said though leadership is paramount in every politics, leadership does not only referred to the man at the helm of affairs alone.
“As long as you make decisions that affect other people’s lives, you are a leader.
“So, we must begin to look at Nigeria in that respect; everybody has a role to play.
“We must connect these individual leaders and pull resources together so that we can move forward and have a definite objective, achievable goal for our future,” he said.
Aluya, a medical doctor with specialisation in pediatrics and internal medicine, also said that every politics is local.
“How many of us know who the mayors or counsellors are?
We must begin to know the basics,” he said.
According to him, if you must change power, you have to get close to power “And how do we begin to do that?
By getting involve in the process,” he added.
He emphasised the need to be involved in grassroots politics.
“Even as we come together to learn to cast our votes, we should begin to build our structure, identify those young ones right now who are untainted, who are not corrupted yet into sponsoring them even to higher levels, to a point where they can begin to run for House of Representatives, Governorship polls and hopefully in the future, run for the Senate and even the president,” he said.
A co-host of the event and a member of NIDOA, Saheed Adeleye, said collaborative experience is needed to redeem the country.
“We in the Diaspora are passionate about our country, yes, but without us collaborating with folks on ground, we will not be able to achieve the prideful recognition of Nigeria that we all desired,” he said.
Corroborating Adeleye’s statement, another co-host and a member of NDN, Deji Adebayo, said there is the need for the youth to talk less and start acting.
“How can we improve on our collective network “It is okay to actually say we want to take over the country, rebranding or recreating the future of Nigeria but we must be realistic of where we are currently and devise the roadmap that will eventually lead us to arrive at the destination that we desired,” he said.
Miss Kemi Roland, the chief executive officer of IIIimite Access, called on the eligible young voters to desist from vote buying.
She said that the act had done more evil than good in the country’s political system.
Miss Roland described the issue of vote buying as “an hydra-headed problem and a vicious circle.
” According to her, it is the citizens themselves that can decide to liberate themselves, by saying enough is enough.
“Many of the politicians spend money, give voters money to get into office.
“And of course, anybody spending money to get into office, sees it as an investment that must be recouped.
“Therefore, every single time voters collect money from a politician, it means they are mortgaging their future.
” Roland, who ccntested for a House of Assembly seat in 2019 in Kogi but lost at the primaries, said voters need to be continuously educated on the need to refrain from vote buying.
“So we need to continue to educate voters that they are the ones that can break this vicious cycle,” she said.
Mr Abdulrahman Bapullo, Chairman, Nigerian Youth Congress, Adamawa, also frowned at the increasing rate of vote buying in the country’s electioneering process.
Bapullo also expressed concern about the negative effect of money politics in Nigerian democracy.
He recalled he was a victim of money politics and godfatherism when he vied for a seat in the Adamawa State House of Assembly election in 2019 but could not get the ticket.
He said to fight against money politics, people with good intention about Nigeria must be ready to get involved in the political process.
“And you cannot get in the political process without having the platform which is the political parties.
“But our problem in Nigeria today is the party system, and internal democracy is one of our major problems,” Bapullo said.
According to him, we have a lot of young people that are very intelligent, who have very practical solutions, but the election is going to be very difficult for them because there is money politics and godfatherism in the system.
A legal practitioner, Mrs Kesi Seun-Adedamola, however, called on the youths to be active in politics for better development.
“We need to talk less and do more; we have to demand for what we want, not just interacting on twitter,” she said.
According to Seun-Adedamola, reality is different from what we talk about on twitter.
“Every change was done by people that demanded for more,” she added.
She said the youths need to know their unique selling point as a generation.
The Chairman, Planning Committee, Mr Sam Atolaiye, said the essence of the summit was to bring all Nigerian youths together, motivate them, get them involved and give them a sense of direction to drive transformational impact and positive change in the country.
“Let us ensure we vote right.
Let us ask politicians questions on how they want to change things for better and how these will be done.
“Let us vote based on their ( the politicians’) credibility and not on the amount of money they have,” he said.
Vice Chairman of Planning Committee, Mr Ben Nwachukwu, said the summit was also organised to inspire the youth to serve their communities by creating a platform for their voices to be heard.
The Muslim Media Practitioners of Nigeria (MMPN), Ondo State Chapter, has called on Nigerians to retrace their steps to the era when leaders and the led reciprocated total trust, mutual understanding and empathy.
This was contained in a statement on Sunday by Mallam Issa Olatunji and Alhaja Fatima Muraina, Chairman and General Secretary of the MMPN state council, to mark the Islamic New Year, Hijrah 1444. The MMPN said the time had come for self evaluation, soul searching and stock – taking as individuals, families, groups or entire societies.
It said Hijrah, among others, was one of the numerous lessons for a country in dire need of moral rebirth and socio-political overhauling.
It also said sincerity of purpose could not be more elucidated elsewhere than the story of migration from Makkah to Madinah, with the noble prophet of Islam as the arrowhead of servant leadership, while his followers too reciprocated by trusting him without any cause to doubt his truthfulness.
“As we mark Hijrah 1444, it should be borne in mind that Nigeria must retrace its steps to the era when both the leaders and the led have total trust, mutual understanding and empathy for each other.
“Undiluted perseverance is needed at this point in time more than ever before in our national history with the myriads of challenges manifested in insecurity, widespread corruption, economic upheavals and political desperado.
It’s “Just like the emigrants abandoned their place of birth, loved ones and what could generally be seen as “familiar terrain” for the unknown environment in the scorching heat of the desert.
“All Nigerians must, as a matter of urgency, be ready to forsake our individual and collective comfort zones to redirect the ship of the nation from poverty to prosperity, impunity to probity, greed to selflessness.
“We must note that there is no shortcut to tangible breakthrough and one cannot put something on nothing.
“Dignity of labour should not only be preached but be promoted and encouraged by concerned authorities so as for millions of Nigerians to have a firm belief that a brand, new nation is possible,” The MMPN said.
The MMPN appealed to religious, traditional, political leaders, and other opinion moulders, as a matter of urgency, to shun any ember of discord which could only spell doom for the most populous black nation on earth.
It said that unity in diversity, otherwise known as multi-culturalism, made it possible for Muslims, Christians, Jews and Pagans to coexist for the evolvement of an economically flourishing and politically stable city-state in Madinah.
According to the MMPN, “we should be ready to jettison religious fanaticism, ethnic bigotry and other forms of intolerance, which pervade our national atmosphere today after sixty years of independence.
“As we approach another election year, it is incumbent we steer away from utterances, behaviours and endeavours that promote segregation, but rather understand the fact that the popular maxim ‘united we stand divided we fall’, is not a myth.
“Because nations like Bosnia Herzegovina, Sudan, Lebanon and lately Ethiopia, have tasted the bitter pills of war which arose from ethnic or sectarian differences.
“Nigeria is endowed with the human and material resources and the path to progress or perdition lies ahead of us, like the story of hijrah; the choice is ours to make”.
The MMPN wished Nigerians a fulfilling and rewarding new year, 1444 After Hijrah, saying “may we all be the very change we desire to see in our beloved country”.
Senegal on Sunday voted in parliamentary elections the opposition hopes will force a coalition with President Macky Sall and curb any ambitions he may hold for a third term.
Sixty-year-old Sall, who was elected in 2012 for seven years and then re-elected in 2019 for another five, has been accused of wanting to break the two-term limit and run again in 2024.
He has remained vague on the subject, but any defeat of his supporters in the vote could upset such plans.
Polling stations opened at 0800 GMT and close at 1800 GMT.
About 100 people, mostly elderly, queued up to vote at a polling station located in a school in the Dakar suburb of Mbao as police kept watch, an AFP journalist said.
“I hope the voting day goes off peacefully and there are no disputes,” said Lamine Sylva, a 60-year-old artist.
“It’s like football — there is a winner and a loser”.
Yahya Sall, a retired soldier, said he hoped the new parliament “will have a strong opposition presence… to advance democracy”.
The national election commission has deployed 22,000 observers nationwide.
The single-round ballot will decide the 165 seats of the single-chamber parliament — currently controlled by the president’s supporters — for the next five years.
Lawmakers are elected according to a system that combines proportional representation, with national lists for 53 lawmakers, and majority voting in the country’s departments for 97 others.
The diaspora elects the remaining 15 members of parliament.
This year, eight coalitions are in the running, including Yewwi Askan Wi (meaning “Liberate the People” in Wolof), the main opposition coalition.
Its highest-profile member, Ousmane Sonko, came third in the 2019 presidential election.
But he and other members of the coalition have been banned from running in Sunday’s elections on technical grounds.
– Opposition collaboration –Ahead of the poll, Yewwi Askan Wi has joined forces with Wall Senegal (which means “Save Senegal” in Wolof), led by former president Abdoulaye Wade. The two groups have agreed to work together to obtain a parliamentary majority and “force governmental cohabitation”.
They also want to force Sall to give up any hope of running in 2024.
In local elections in March, the opposition won in major cities, including the capital Dakar, Ziguinchor in the south, and Thies in the west.
Sonko and other members of the Yewwi Askan Wi coalition were forbidden from running in Sunday’s elections after the authorities in early June tossed out its national list of candidates on technical grounds.
One of the names had been accidentally put down both as a first-choice candidate and as an alternate candidate, thus invalidating the entire list.
That sparked violent demonstrations that left at least three people dead.
On June 29, the opposition finally agreed to take part in the elections, easing tensions.