Hijrah 1445: Let’s uphold love, shun bad deeds— Oyo deputy gov tells Muslims

…says Makinde led administration will continue to be fair to religious faiths

The deputy governor of Oyo state, Barrister Abdul-Raheem Adebayo Lawal has urged Muslim community in Oyo state to continue to uphold love among themselves and to avoid any actions that would reflect poorly on Islam.

Lawal, who stated this on Sunday during the Hijrah 1445 celebration at Adamasigba stadium, said that the purpose of the Hijrah day celebration is to be guided by its lessons and significance in our day-to-day living and interactions with others.

He emphasised that everyone must learn the lessons of tolerance, love, and abstinence from bad deeds, saying the first of Muharram marked the migration of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, from his birthplace of Mecca in search of a peaceful and conducive atmosphere to practise Islam.

The deputy governor, who equally noted that the celebration is also to hold on with the truth and avoiding lies, as well as promoting good governance, said he must express his gratitude to the Muslim community for their support re-electing governor Seyi Makinde.

He said: “On behalf of Governor Seyi Makinde, I wish everyone a joyful hijrah celebration. I must commend NACOMYO for their work in the state’s Islamic issues and in supporting Omitutun 2.0.

“I urge you to continue your good activities and must not stop calling on our attention rather than criticising us. I assure you that our administration will continue to treat all religious beliefs equally.”

According to Lawal, who took salute before the start of the children’s March pass, said the Hijrah New Islamic year work free day since the inception of the Omitutun Government has already been gazetted. He also reiterated that the Makinde-led administration will never permit anything to cause a religious crisis in Oyo state.

He added that the government was able to prevent a religious crisis in Ibarapaland and more recently in Ibadan when the Egungun festival celebration was suspended due to reports of violence and shop looting by some as-yet-unidentified hoodlums.

Revealing that all Oyo pilgrims have returned safely as he had prayed that everyone would return home safely in the holy land, he stated that it was only a woman who fell sick in Makkah that is yet to return home.

He further said Oyo state government is still keeping track of her condition and that she’s currently receiving treatment as well as communicating with her family.

The deputy governor who bemoaned the national hajj commission’s bad treatment of pilgrims however said that it was due to overcentralization of the system as he urged people at federal level to engage them for greater reform.

He asserts that if not for the help of Allah, 19 pilgrims would not have been allowed to perform the hajj due to issue from National hajj commission, saying there is need for little adjustment in the regard of preparation for hajj journey.

Lawal pointed out that one the problems of the national hajj commission is the health issue, which according to him, the national hajj didn’t allow each state to take care of its people, saying they need to be seriously engaged to improve on their services.

“In Oyo state, we did whatever we were supposed to do. But the national hajj commission failed in their own bid. Not Oyo state board made our people to go through pain.

“With the challenges we had, we thank Allah that all Oyo pilgrims went for hajj. But to come back, it’s the national hajj commission that’s in charge. Not Oyo state board. Airlift back to Nigeria was delayed for two weeks by National Hajj Commission.

“I kept engaging both our board and hajj commission. Welfare of our pilgrims should be Paramount to hajj commission. If they can’t do it, they should allow each state to take responsibilities.

“On behalf of Governor Makinde, I welcome all Oyo pilgrims who have just returned and pray Allah accept it as an act of Iba’adah”. Amen.

Earlier in his remarks, the guest lecturer, Ustaz Abdul Salam Ajibola Modarikan, said political leaders need to fulfil their promises, commending the administration of Governor Seyi Makinde for keeping to its promises and also promoting religious tolerance in the state.

He noted that part of what brings about development is continuity adding that his re-election will further spring up development.

“Our Governor, Seyi Makinde performed so well during COVID 19. I am urging you to further strengthen the security of the state and also continue to create employment for the youths.”

However, in his own message of goodwill, Alhaji Kunle Sanni praised Governor Seyi Makinde for protecting the Muslims’ interests in his recent appointment for Omitutun 2.0 and the deputy governor, Barrister Bayo Lawal, for his efforts to advance Islam in the state.

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