‘Muslim world has lost another illustrious son’
For Muslims across the country, the demise of a colossus and a philanthropist, Alhaji Sakariyau Babalola will definitely leave a vacuum in the Ummah.
Babalola, who was the former President of Muslims of South Western Nigeria MUSWEN and Deputy President General of Nigeria Supreme Council For Islamic Affairs, was described by sympathisers as a humble, pious and dutiful Muslim, ready to accept responsibility in the course of Islam.
48 hours after his burial, scores of tributes were still coming in from major Islamic organisations, including the Muslim Public Affairs Centre, (MPAC), The Muslim Congress (TMC), Nasirul-lahi-l-fathi (NASFAT), Muslim Media Practitioners of Nigeria (MMPN), The Companion and the University of Lagos Muslim Alumni (UMA), University of Lagos Muslim Community, among others.
Director, Media and Strategic Communications, MPAC Nigeria, Abdulwarees Solanke said the Muslim world has lost another illustrious son who dedicated his entire life to the service of Allah, beyond the shores of Nigeria.He said: “Babalola lived an extremely Spartan life despite the immense blessings of Allah on him. His humility was legendary, and his unparalleled leadership qualities manifest in his pioneering efforts at the formation of MUSWEN,”
According to Solanke, death is a certainty, because every soul shall taste death. The beauty of death particularly for the Muslim whose covenant of devotion and service to Allah remained sacrosanct till his last breath, is that Allah has promised such Al -jannat. He prayed to Allah to continue to raise for our ummah men and women of strong faith and inspiring and exemplary character to provide leadership for the Muslim Ummah and the nation at large.
National Ameer (President), TMC, Dr. Lukman AbdurRaheem, said Babalola is a humble, pious and dutiful Muslim.“He used his wealth, honor and position to positively impact on the less privileged. He built several mosques and supported several Islamic organizations financially. He empowered numerous individuals irrespective of their ideological inclinations. We will surely miss this iconic figure. His space would be difficult to fill.”
NASFAT President, Engr Kamil Bolarinwa, described the late business mogul as a great pillar of support for Islam stating that the he was very compassionate about Islam and was always willing to rise to any demand relating to Islam.
“While we mourn the passage of this great icon, we enjoin the stakeholders to emulate the sterling qualities of the deceased for which he endeared himself to many. NASFAT equally advise that the successor of this great icon in his positions should be meticulously selected,” he advised
UMA President and Chief of Staff to the Governor of Ogun State, Alhaji Shuaib Afolabi Salis, described the late Babalola as a colossus of the Muslim community whose commitment and generosity will be sorely missed.“Babalola was a pillar of Islam in Nigeria. He was a selfless man who contributed immensely to the spiritual, educational and economic empowerment of Muslims across the country,” he said.
A leader of The Companion an association of Muslims in business and the professions, Barr. Kunle Hassan, said Babalola was no doubt the last titan following the demise of the caliber of late M K O Abiola, Alhaji Wahab Folawiyo and Alhaji Azees Arisekola Alao.
Chairman, UNILAG Muslim Community, Lai Olurode, said Babalola had very humble beginnings and demonstrated rare determination which later earned him success.“He never submitted to the challenges and natural intimidation of being born without a silver spoon in one’s mouth.”
His was a classical example of a gentle rise from rag to riches. He moved in the company of people that he wished to be like. He wasn’t one to be in consistent lamentations regarding birth circumstances. A bridge builder, he had good working relationship with of diverse origins,”