Chris Steven, Abuja
The Federal Government has urged Muslims across the country to respect constituted authorities in order to promote national security, stability and societal cohesion.
Minister of Information Alhaji Lai Mohammed gave the advice yesterday at the Abuja National Mosque during a two-day conference on “Promoting National Stability Through Constructive Social Relations with Constituted Authority” organized by the Zaymar Islamic Research and Development Education Centre.
This was as the duo of the Chief of Army Staff Major-General Tukur Yusuf Buratai and Chief of Naval Staff Vice Admiral Ibok Ekwe Ibas assured Nigerians of security and respect for human rights.
The minister said Muslims no matter the sect they belong to must accord constituted authority in the country the requisite recognition and loyalty it deserves as Islam is synonymous with peace and loyalty to constituted authority.
“The Holy Qur’an and the Prophet Muhammad harp on the need for believers to obey, remain loyal and to recognize and acknowledge the authority of those who preside over their affairs, particularly their Muslim leaders. We should treat them with utmost respect and desist from being confrontational to them,” Mohammed said.
He warned that a deviation from this advice is tantamount to ungratefulness and that such will only spell further doom over and above what the country is currently experiencing.
Buratai represented by the Army Director of Religious Affairs Col. Shehu Garba Mustafa and Ibas represented by the Admiral Superintended Naval Dockyard Limited Lagos, Rear Admiral Abdullateef Akintola and said that the citizens’ resolve to work with the constituted authorities is key to resolving the nation’s multi-faceted challenges.
Niger State Governor Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello who was represented by his Special Adviser on Religious Affairs, Alhaji Tanko Baba Ahmed, said that the theme of the conference is apt considering current happenings in the country.
He decried a situation where the youth who are the future of the country have been neglected by both the government and the society, adding: “We have it as a duty to individually and collectively cater for the youth because they are the future generation.”
National Coordinator of Zaymar Hajiya Shifa Garba said the conference was among others meant to bridge the gap and cement existing relationship between the citizens and the leaders across the country.