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Nobody can Islamise Nigeria, says Sultan


Alhaji Muhammad Sa'ad Abubakar III

Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III

Tasks Citizens On Peaceful Coexistence

The Sultan of Sokoto and President of the Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, has told Nigerians to forget the fears or suspicion of a grand plan to turn Nigeria into an Islamic state.

Abubakar pointed out yesterday that it is not possible for a multi-religious country like Nigeria to be converted into a monolithic religious state.

Speaking while commissioning the International Centre for Inter-Faith Peace and Harmony’s office in Kaduna, the Sultan, who is also a Co-Chairman of the centre, argued that no country survives a religious war; hence Christians and Muslims in Nigeria must imbibe the culture of peace and peaceful co-existence.

While also urging Nigerians to promote issues that would strengthen the country’s unity, Abubakar said ethnic and religious crises in the country ought to have by now become a thing of the past, adding: “No country survives war or war stimulated by religious intolerance.”

According to him, religious practice should be voluntary and not by force, insisting: “We have seen countries where people are killing one another. Obviously, there can be no peace in such countries. Killing is not part of the teachings of the Holy book.”

He called on Christians and Muslims across the world to desist from making comments insinuating that anybody is out to Islamise Nigeria.

The Sultan noted: “Nigeria has a Muslim President and before him was a Christian President. We must see ourselves as one big family. Without that, we cannot have peace.

“It is not possible to Islamise Nigeria. If God had wanted, He would have created all Christians or all Muslims.

“We are not secular, but a multi-religious state, because the people are so religious. We must respect one another and understand the tenets of the two religions.”

Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai decried the series of crises that had erupted in the state, lamenting that the state has been divided along religious lines.

El-Rufai remarked that religion is no longer a matter of life after death, but turned to business, just as he added that those who operate the religious business make money by promoting division, adding: “We must de-emphasise our differences and promote peace.”

Meanwhile, the General Secretary of the Christian Council of Nigeria (CCN), Rev. Yusuf Ibrahim Wushishi, in a speech noted that by nature, religion plays a vital role in purposeful leadership, community building, social justice, law and order, among others.

He added: “Our obligatory responsibility, as faith-based community in Nigeria, is to respect our religious differences. In our diversity as a
nation, we are bound to opt for bonds based on our common humanity.”

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  • Pius Odiaka

    I sincerely agree with the Sultan. Those who make business with religion preach discord. You find them in both Islam and Christianity. Only their blind faithful are their fathers, mothers or siblings.
    I strong advocate for a national legislation on hate or divisive sermons in the country. It will enhance peace in a plural country like Nigeria.

  • vincentumenyiora

    I agree with the observations no doubt but the issue is with the leaders on choosing the representations not keeping to that provision in the Constitution about ‘federal character’ – I didn’t write it, and once you deviate from it then it begins to play on the minds of people! Yes, a ‘secular State’ but then if the appointments are skewed – one sided then the suspicions kick into the who set-up! I sometimes wonder don’t Nigeria have Christian Northerners to be featured in appointments on Federal levels? Essentially the Cleric must bear in their minds that they are dealing with the minds of people (individuals) not entirely with their creator therefore the minds can ‘falter’ in situations where their kinds are neglected in participation hence my new solution for political leadership for Nigeria, which they need to (must) study critically if you you’ll have the peace anticipated for country of Nigerian structure and size! No harm in looking at the submission, after all my ‘Option A-4’ is helping now in Nigeria even though late!

  • humble zayon