President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki; and the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, have urged Muslims to pray for Nigeria as the Ramadan, an annual 30-day fast, begins.
This was just as a cleric, Chief Imam Abdulwaheed Abubakar, thanked God for the healing of President Muhammadu Buhari of the ailment that kept the President away from the country throughout the Ramadan fast of last year.
According to a statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, Buhari, on Thursday, joined Muslim faithful at a mosque located inside the Presidential Villa, Abuja, for the Ramadan Tafsir – the translation and explanation of the Holy Quran.
The statement read, “At the Mosque in the Aso Rock Villa, Abuja, the Chief Imam, Abdulwaheed Abubakar, opened the exercise with gratitude to Allah for freeing the President of the ailment that kept him away from the country throughout this period last year.
“He wished President Buhari full health and the energy he needs to discharge the requirements of his office.”
Meanwhile, Saraki, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, in Abuja on Thursday, urged Muslims to use the Ramadan period to pray for continuous unity and peaceful coexistence in the country.
Saraki said, “The commencement of fast has yet provided us with rare and unique opportunity to fervently pray over the security situation of the country and call on Allah to help us restore sanity and love among our countrymen and women.
“Nigerians, Muslims in particular, should make use of this opportunity to pray for the end of insecurity and other violent crimes threatening our existence both as a people and nation.
“Apart from being a time to assist the weak, vulnerable and the less fortunate among us, let us utilise this period to pray for continuous peace and unity in the country because with Allah’s help all our individual and national challenges are surmountable.”
Also, Ekweremadu called on Muslims to pray for the peace and security of Nigeria.
The Deputy Senate President, who made the call in his goodwill message to Muslims issued by his Special Adviser on Media, Uche Anichukwu, expressed concern over the incessant killings across the country and urged Muslims to pray for divine help for the country.
He said, “The killings are quite disturbing. We have never had it so bad in peacetime. Therefore, while the security agencies do their best to end the carnage, I also call on our Muslim brethren to fast and pray fervently in this holy month of Ramadan for divine intervention in the security and stability of the country.”
Also, Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, his Nasarawa State counterpart, Tanko Al-Makura, a former governor of Osun State, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, and a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole, felicitated with Muslim faithful in the country, urging them to embrace peace.
Akeredolu, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Segun Ajiboye, said, “The Ramadan fasting period, being a season of discipline and sacrifice, will give the Muslims another opportunity to reflect on the essence of living a holy life.”
On his own part, Bankole, in a statement by his media aide, Morgan Amodu, said, “Let us take advantage of this holy month to seek God’s intervention in our collective affairs, because God is ever committed to His promises, in His infinite mercy, all our concerns will be sorted.”
Al-Makura appealed to all religious leaders in the country to preach love, unity and message of reconciliation.
He urged Muslim faithful not to engage in controversial issues that were capable of causing disunity in the country.
Oyinlola, who is a chieftain of the African Democratic Congress, congratulated Muslims on the commencement of Ramadan fast, urging them to use the period to pray for the peace of Nigeria and peaceful conduct of the upcoming elections in Osun and Ekiti states.