… Reiterates Call For Unity, Love At MUSWEN Endowment Fundraising
… Urges All Governors To Donate Generously Towards The Project
His Eminence, the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, NSCIA, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III again reiterated the fact that Muslims have no reason to be poor if only the rich are paying their zakat regularly so as to help the less-privileged.
He also called on Muslims in Nigeria to remain united irrespective of their differences saying that we can be united and not be uniform.
Alhaji Abubakar III made the call in Lagos recently at the N10 billion Endowment Fundraising organised by the Muslim Ummah of South West Nigeria (MUSWEN).
He said while outright uniformity cannot be attained, Nigerian Muslims must remain united without allowing extraneous factors to come in-between them.
In his goodwill message, the leader of the Nigerian Muslims narrated how he was part of the formation of MUSWEN.
“I was in Ibadan in 2008 when it was established. Alhamdulilah today, we are gathered for this very important event in the effort to move MUSWEN forward. I’m part of the MUSWEN history.
“I want to thank the president of MUSWEN who is also the Deputy President-General (South) of the Supreme Council. I like to appreciate Prof. Oloyede, the Secretary-General of the Supreme Council.”
The Sultan, who said his presence at the event could not be quantified in monetary terms said; “My presence signifies a lot. This is MUSWEN. Whatever success MUSWEN gets, it’s the Muslim Ummah in Nigeria that is getting that success.
“Wherever a Muslim is developing, I am happy, there is another Muslim somewhere who is happy. We will continue to work together with MUSWEN.”
“I want to also emphasize the need for Muslims to be united. MUSWEN is promoting unity. We can be united, but we don’t have to be uniform. That’s why we have people who are Yorubas, Igbos, Hausas, Fulanis and so on, but we are all Muslims. We need to be united and not let anything come between us”.
The Sultan, however, made a passionate appeal to governors in southwest states, many of whom were represented at the event, to support the MUSWEN project.
He also enjoined the MUSWEN leadership to form a team to mobilise funds from well-to-do individuals and groups in the country.
“We all must ensure this project is completed within the shortest possible time. I also urge our governors to support this cause. It doesn’t matter whether you are a Muslim or Christian governor. Donate to this cause because you are helping humanity.”
“You are helping the people you are leading. If they are happy and stable, you will be happy and stable too. This is a positive project, and I believe after this event, we should have a team that will reach out to people and see how they can contribute.
“As President of the Supreme Council, I believe we have a lot to do and we have this common passion to elevate the standard of living and quality of life of all Muslims, not only in the south but across the world. And not only Muslims but also non-Muslims that Allah puts together.
“There is no reason for Muslims to be poor if we follow the tenets of Islam. We should help one another, pay zakat and so on. We have no business with poverty but Almighty Allah challenges us with many things.”
Also speaking at the event, Dr Abdurrauf Wale Babalakin and Alhaji Tajudeen Fola Adeola called on stakeholders in the project to ensure judicious use of the funds.
Imam AbdurRahman Ahmad in his sermon, called on all well-to-do Muslims to do tangible donations that will stop the idea of going cap in hand every time there’s need for money by donating buildings, landed properties as Waqf that can generate huge funds towards implementation of the MUSWEN project and others.
In his welcome address, MUSWEN’s President, Alhaji AbdulRasaq Oladejo said that the fund was meant to build a world-class National Secreatariat, Resource and Entrepreneural centre in Ibadan, Oyo State.
According to him, the centre will primarily be designed to help youths acquire functional commercial skills, capacity development to start and grow business and open access to funding and financing opportunities.
“The centre is designed to have many components including entrepreneural centre for business development services, counselling, training and skill acquisition services, 100-guest chalets, Jumah mosque, shopping and multi-purpose halls, banquets and restaurants among others.”
The Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Dr. Abdulkadri Obafemi Hamzat, raised concerns about the alarming rate of religious intolerance in Nigeria.
Delivering a goodwill message on behalf of the Executive Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, he said, “We should not deceive ourselves, religion intolerance is still prevailent in our society. We must watch for tolerance in our country.
“So, the discrimination is still there and we must find a way to say it is not the right thing. Nobody should be discriminated against on account of their religion, whether a Muslim or a Christian, or even a non-believer.”
Dr. Hamzat commended MUSWEN, a non-governmental and non-political umbrella body of all Muslim communities, institutions and associations in southwest Nigeria for their initiative to build a world-class national secretariat as well as a resource and entrepreneurial centre.
He described the initiative as a worthy ambition that will enable youths access finance, education and healthcare services.
“This sort of infrastructural cause that helps to train, educate and provide opportunities for Muslim youths must be commended,” he said.
“It’s a good initiative that hopefully will create access or ability for our youths to have some of the things that are missing today – like access to finance, education and health services.
He pledged that the Lagos State Government will have a clear discussion with the leadership of MUSWEN and see in what areas it could be of support.
“Our government appreciates the cooperation it has always enjoyed from different religious organisations and their timely interventions in providing solutions to issues.”