Cleric admonishes Muslims on God consciousness
By Kadiri Abdulrahman
Abuja, Feb. 2, 2019 (NNN) A Muslim Cleric, Imam Yahya Al-Yolawi, has admonished Muslims to always have the consciousness of Allah in all endeavours to protect themselves from His punishment.
Al-Yolawi, who is the Imam of the Area 10 Juma’at Mosque, Garki, Abuja, gave the admonition during his sermon at the mosque on Friday.
“In Islam, Taqwa means that a person should have protection and shield between him and the anger or punishment of Allah.
“The protection can be established through sound faith and good deeds, which in turn, will cause great love and fear of Allah that will lead to doing righteous deeds and avoiding evil ones,’’ he said.
The cleric said the significance of God consciousness was that Allah accepts acts of worship only from those who have the fear of Allah in their hearts.
He advised Muslims to fear Allah anywhere they are and in any condition they find themselves to earn His love and blessings. (NNN)
Edited by Bola Akingbehin/Muhammad Suleiman Tola
By Joan Odafe
Lagos, Jan. 30, 2019 (NNN) A Clinical Psychologist, Dr Morakinyo Gabriel, has called on the Federal Government to take urgent action toward curbing the activities of ritualists in the country.
Gabriel, who works with the Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Yaba (FNPHY), made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NNN) on Wednesday in Lagos.
He said the current trend of activities by some youths, popularly called “Yahoo plus Boys who steal women’s underwear and sanitary pads for money ritual could affect the mental health of the populace.
According to him, the security agencies should assuage the fears and anxieties of the populace by enlightening them on necessary steps toward curbing these nefarious activities.
“The suspicion, sensitivity and the paranoia among people toward these Yahoo plus boys are better imagined.
“Oh, let me keep this very safely, ‘’ “oh, let me lock the doors,’’ “who is going to be the next victim’’ and “what am I going to do?
“All of these emotions will mostly lead to negative behaviour,’’ Gabriel said.
He explained that the fear of having to lose personal wears to ritualists was contributing largely to the mental health situation in the country.
“To worsen the case, the citizens are wondering about what the government is doing to stem the tide,’’ he said.
The psychologist said there was a need for government to take pro-active steps to curb the new trend of stealing ladies’ under-wears.
He noted that those who engage in money rituals were like other criminals who had no consideration for human lives.
“They see the other person as just a tool to achieve an end.
“There is a total disregard for the sanctity of human life; what matters is the gain they get.
“They are not bothered about what they do to achieve it,’’ he said. (NNN)
(Edited by Abdulfatah Babatunde/Mufutau Ojo)
By Uwumarogie Peter
Gombe, Jan. 29, 2019 (NNN) The Gombe State Office of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Tuesday advised parents to always speak up against rape to protect children and ensure reduction of rape cases in the state.
Mr Mohammed Abari, the Assistant Chief Investigation Officer of the commission, gave this advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NNN) in Gombe.
“The danger of not reporting cases of rape when it happens is that it puts other children in the society at risk because a culprit that is not prosecuted will continue with his heinous acts.’’
According to him, cases of rape are not reducing in the state, but parents are not willing to report the incidents for fear of stigmatisation and respect for elders who administer the affairs of communities.
“A parent, whose child has been violated, must speak up as a way of reducing rape and protecting other children in the state. It is dangerous to keep mute in such situation.
“Cases of rape are not reducing, and parents are not reporting for fear of stigmatisation. They refuse to report for confidentiality. If all cases are not reported, rape will continue to be on the increase,” he said.
Abari said that some parents failed to report such cases because elders within the community might beg them against taking such a decision, having promised to settle all medical bills and both parties would agree.
“The danger of not reporting is that it puts other children at risk. So, I advise parents to shout out and insist on the proper punishment, and should not bow to communal settlement,” the official said.
He appealed to communities to encourage reporting of such cases, adding that the commission would carry out more sensitisation in this regard to encourage parents speak up on rape matters. (NNN)
Edited by Folorunso Poroye/Tajudeen Atitebi
By Clara Egbogota
Lagos, Jan 22, 2019 (NNN) The Chief Missioner of Nasruahil-l-Fatih Society (NASFAT), Imam Abdul-Azeez Onike, has called on Muslims not to engage anything that would undermine the peace of the nation, during and after the general elections.
Onike made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NNN) on Tuesday in Lagos.
He also urged Muslims to advise their wards and children not to foment trouble during campaigns and elections.
“No member should engage in thuggery, election violence or anything that will undermine the peace of the nation and by extension, tarnishing the image of Islam and NASFAT.
“Members are to conduct themselves honourably before, during and after elections.
“We should remember Quran teaching that says, do no mischief on the earth after it hath been set in order, but call on Him with fear and longing (in your hearts):
“The Mercy of Allah is (always) near to those who do good,” he said.
Onike further urged Muslims to ensure that they collect their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) and exercise their civic duties in the forthcoming elections.
“Elections are our opportunities to decide who should be in power and who would be elected, therefore, it is important that everyone gets his or her Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs).
“Everyone has one or two comments about our leaders, but our comments will be better utilised if we all get our PVCs.
“It is also important that we look carefully at those who we want to vote into power; look at their antecedents and do a background check on them.
“Let us also pray for those who are in office to do it right and those who intend to come to have the right spirit, as we prepare for the elections.”
The Chief Missioner also urged Missioners to dedicate five minutes of “undistracted commitment ‘at Sunday Asalatu and and Friday Tahajjud (Prayer Vigil), for peaceful general elections in the country.(NNN)
Edited by Dada Ahmed
By Chidinma Ewunonu-Aluko
Ibadan, Jan. 21, 2019 (NNN) The Director-General of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Brig.-Gen. Suleman Kazaure, on Monday paid an advocacy visit to Maj.-Gen. Fidelis Azinta, the General Officer Commanding (GOC), 2 Division, Nigerian Army, Ibadan.
Speaking during the visit, Kazaure, who also visited the Director, Department of State Services (DSS) in Oyo State, Mr Abel Achi, said he was on an advocacy and sensitisation tour of corps members’ locations in preparation for the general elections.
He said that the visit was also to discuss corps members’ safety during and after the elections.
“ The 2019 elections are near, some corps members will work as INEC ad-hoc officers, we want to ensure that they are adequately secured during and after the elections.
“We thank the army, other security operatives for the cordial relationship we have shared with them, we hope the good relationship continues,” he said.
He stressed that corps members would not be deployed to areas that wre not adequately secured.
Azinta, in his response, noted that the NYSC remains an important scheme in Nigeria as it binds the country together.
He underscored the need for everything to be done for the scheme to succeed.
Azinta gave an assurance that he would do his best to ensure adequate security for corps members under his command during and after the elections.
“We will do everything possible to make sure that they are protected, the corps members deployed to work in different areas will be given the phone numbers of our security officers assigned to the area.
“We will also ensure that the elections are violence- free, so people should not fear, they should come out and vote because there will be peace,” he said.
Azinta further urged the NYSC management to also discuss with traditional rulers, representatives of political parties and other relevant stakeholders on the safety of corps members.
Achi also promised that his command and the NYSC would continue to be partners in progress, adding that the safety of corps members was the military’s priority.
“We don’t take them for granted in any way, we will not only provide security for the corps members alone but also for NYSC staff.
“We have adequate security measures for their safety during the elections,” he said.
The director-general was accompanied by the NYSC Director of Special Duties, Mr Hilary Nasamu, the Director, Press and Public Relations Unit, Mrs Adenike Adeyemi, and the Oyo state NYSC Coordinator, Mrs Emiola Ambekemo. (NNN)
(Edited by Ifeyinwa Okonkwo/Mufutau Ojo)
By Salisu Sani-Idris
Abuja, Jan. 18, 2019 (NNN) An Abuja-based Cleric, Sheikh Yahya Al-Yolawi, has advised political leaders to fear God, by fulfilling their campaign promises.
Al-Yolawi, who is also the Chief Imam of Area 10 Garki Mosque, gave the advice while delivering the Friday sermon entitled, `The Significance of Trustworthiness,’ on Friday in Abuja.
The cleric also enjoined those who entrusted with public funds to ensure accountability and transparency in the management of the funds for the good of the society.
Al-Yolawi also urged public office holders to learn from the mistakes of their predecessors, saying “leadership is a trust and you will be asked (by Allah) on what youbwerr entrusted upon.
“ Being truthful, in promise and covenants, is one of the best characteristics by which true believers are known.
“ Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) was recognised even before his prophethood to be the trustworthy one.
“ Islam encourages trusting people; and indeed, Allah command you to render trust to whom due.“
The cleric, therefore, admonished muslim politicians to emulate the exemplary leadership style of early Muslim leaders like Umar Bn Abdulazeez, who ruled as a Caliph in Umayyad dynasty for 30 months. (NNN)
Edited by Kamal Tayo Oropo/ Dada Ahmed
By Bushrah Yusuf-Badmus
Ilorin, Jan. 23, 2019 (NNN) Kwara civil servants on Wednesday advised traders in the state against inflating the prices of goods, in order to make the newly-announced minimum wage of between N27,000 and N30,000 meaningful.
The workers gave the advice in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NNN) in Ilorin.
According to them, traders and artisans in the country always increase prices of goods and services whenever the government announces a new minimum wage.
Mrs Aisha Bello, who works with the state government, urged the traders not to hike the prices of their goods when the manufacturers did not increase theirs.
“It is common to start inconveniencing ourselves at the slightest opportunity; so, we are begging the traders to be merciful on the workers.
“If the goods are not expensive from the manufacturers, they should please leave us for God’s sake and not increase the costs,’’ Bello said.
Mr Toyin Adewole of the Federal Ministry of Information in the state, said it was time to reduce the workers’ sufferings.
“This is our time to enjoy the benefits of the new wage. We have suffered a great deal when the prices of goods rocketed and the salary was not increased.
“So, we are begging the traders to have the fear of God in them and let all of us enjoy this together,’’ Adewole said.
Another state government worker, Mr Taiye Ibraheem, said it was a long walk to freedom.
“The traders should not turn it into negative for us.
“Though we deserve better than what the organised labour agreed on, we appreciate the increase. The traders should not create another problem for us,’’ Ibraheem said.
On his part, Mr Dotun Philips said that government should check the traders’ excesses by regulating the prices of goods and ensuring strict compliance. (NNN)
Edited by Folorunso Poroye/Adeleye Ajayi
By Muftau Ogunyemi
Okitipupa(Ondo State),Feb.3, 2019(NNN) Chief Akin Olujimi, former Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, has advised government at all levels to enact laws that would promote and sustain peace in the country.
Olujumi, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria(SAN), was in office between 2003 and 2005 during the regime of former president Olusegun Obasanjo.
The former minister made the call in Okitipupa, Okitipupa Local Government Area of Ondo State during the 2019 Annual Law Week of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Okitipupa branch.
Olujinmi, who spoke on the theme ‘Society, Insecurity and the Law’, said that government was existing to protect the lives and the properties of citizens of the country.
According to him, every Nigerian needs to join hands with the government to bring lasting solution to insecurity in the nation.
“We need government to look more on the issue of security of the nation and if that means enacting laws that will interfere with my rights and your rights ,we have to bear it because we need peace in this society.
“When government enacts laws that require that either you or I needs to give way, we should not cry foul.
“They do not mean harm to you and I, they are only taking a drastic step to ensure that there would be peace in human society.
“Boko Haram is killing today, kidnappers are doing their own, you and I are not save.
” In the face of such challenges as mass killings and destructions, are the affected governments to simply watch for fear of being accused of breaches of human rights and denial of justice?.
“The demand of national security far outweighs or overrides the need for protection of human rights. So where national security is threatened, human rights will have to give way,” he said.
Olujinm said that calling for the restructuring of the nation and the constitution should not be the priority of the government.
He said that there was a need for Nigerians to have a change of mind and personal restructuring for things to work out.
He said that Nigerians should not continue to blame the constitution, arguing that “it is not the constitution that is bad but we that are operating it.”
“We need to re-orientate ourselves, let us change our attitude and manner. let us understand that when we get to position, we are there to serve and not for our private pocket.
“You may go on reviewing the constitution everyday, it will not work if you and I do not change our attitud.”
The renowned lawyer said that any accused must be given the chance to be heard before any decision could be made against such individual.
According to him, the principle of fair hearing is conceptualised in law to ensure justice in the determination of matters affecting government and individuals.
Olujinmi, who explained that the law did not discriminate between the poor and the rich, said there was need for general re-orientation “so that we can make the laws serve the society better”
He said that the reason for the failure of the law in some cases was sometimes external to the law itself.
Olujimi, therefore, called on leaders to stand up to the reality facing the country today.
The former minister said there was need for government to re-direct and re-energise policies so that the masses could feel the impact of governance.
Mr Omololu Bagbe, NBA Chairman, Okitipupa branch, said that the association would continue to defend, promote and propagate the rule of law in the society.
Bagbe said that it had become imperative for members of the association to sensitise the general public on the need to shun vote buying during the forth coming general elections.
He said that vote buying was against the laws of the land.
“Some politicians know how to use money to buy their way, but people should not sell their conscience this time around because real politicians who have good missions and visions will not engage in vote buying.
“People should not see the election as a do or die affair. They need to shun hate speech, so that we can live as one Nigeria,”Bagbe advised.(NNN)
Edited by Muftau Adediran/Dada Ahmed
Tokyo, Feb. 5, 2019 (Reuters/NNN) German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday that her country would withdraw from coal-fired power production by 2038.
This move showed her support for the deadline recommended by a government-appointed commission that suggested shut down of all coal-fired power plant by 2038.
The so-called coal commission last month also proposed at least 40 billion euros (45.7 billion dollars) in aid to coal-mining states affected by the phase-out.
“We want to be out of coal in 2038. Then we need more gas,” Merkel said in a speech at Keio University in Tokyo, in her first clear indication that she supported the recommendation.
The proposals highlight Germany’s shift to renewables, which made up more than 40 per cent of its energy mix last year, surpassing coal for the first time.
They must now be implemented by the German government and 16 regional states.
The plan, however, has drawn criticism from some in the industry who fear the impact of higher energy prices.
A senior legislator from the most pro-business wing in Merkel’s party hinted in a weekend newspaper interview that the phase-out could be delayed beyond 2038 if the deadline created problems for the security of electricity supply. (Reuters/NNN)
Edited by Abdullahi Mohammed/Ismail Abdulaziz
Nothing to fear about Eclipse – Scientists
By Ijeoma Olorunfemi
Abuja, Jan, 19, 2019 (NNN) Astronomy and Astrophysics researchers at the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN), said on Saturday that there was nothing to fear over the expected total lunar eclipse on Monday.
The researchers said eclipse is a natural occurrences that helps scientists understand the celestial body.
The scientists made the remarks in separate telephone interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NNN) in Abuja.
One of them, Dr Bonaventure Okere, while reacting to the lunar eclipse expected to take place on Monday, said some people still misunderstood the natural occurrence.
Okere who is also the Acting Director, Centre for Basic Space Science (CBSS) Nsukka said some people still attach spiritual meanings to eclipse which was not so.
Lunar eclipse occurs when the moon appears darkened as it passes into the earth’s shadow and occurs only when the sun, earth and moon were exactly aligned with the earth between the two.
It can occur only on the night of a full moon. The type and length of a lunar eclipse depend on the moon’s proximity to either node of its orbit.
NNN reports that the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) predicted that Nigeria would experience total lunar eclipse on Monday.
Okere said: “For the scientists, eclipse helps them to study and understand the shape of the celestial bodies but for the lay man, it is just to demystify some myths.
“Some people attach some spiritual meanings to it which is not meant to be.
“Some people may see it and think that the world is coming to an end. We create the awareness to sensitise people that it is not something to be frightened about.
“People should understand that a lot of things happen naturally and it is the scientist who is left to inform people about such occurrence”.
He said that the total lunar eclipse would be the last eclipse to be experienced until 2021.
Prof. Augustine Ubachukwu, leader of the researchers, said unlike solar eclipse, which occurs when the moon completely covers the sun’s disk, lunar eclipse was safe to view.
Ubachukwu said “people can view the lunar eclipse without any eye protection or special precautions, as they are dimmer than the full moon.”
According to him, the total phase of this total lunar eclipse will be visible from North and South America, and Western parts of Europe and Africa.
“Central and Eastern Africa, Europe, and Asia will see a partial eclipse of the Moon.
“The lunar eclipse begins at 3:36 a.m. early Monday and last until 8:48 a.m., starting and ending as the moon passes through the penumbra (the lighter part ) of the earth’s shadow”.
The team leader said the whole duration of the eclipse would be one hour, one minute and 58 seconds.
He further said the whole process would include partial eclipse initially, full eclipse, maximum eclipse,full eclipse again, moon set and end with a partial eclipse.
Ubachukwu also said people should not be scared, as the eclipse was one of creation’s mysteries. (NNN)
Edited by Isaac Aregbesola/Maharazu Ahmed