Sallah: Buhari Commends Muslims, Christians For Understanding Over COVID-19 Guidelines

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has commended Nigerians for their patience and understanding over the inconveniences created by precautionary measures put in place to curb the spread of the COVID-19.

He also reiterated his call on citizens to continue to exercise patience and understanding over the inconveniences, especially the regulations on places of worship.

In his Sallah message to Muslims on Thursday, ahead of the Eid-el-Kabir celebration, the President said the outbreak of the coronavirus has made it difficult for people to gather in places of worship as they are used to, urging worshipers to abide by the guidelines for safety of their lives, and loved ones.

“The coronavirus has had devastating adverse impacts on our social, economic and spiritual lives.

“The preventive guidelines we have introduced to contain the spread of this deadly disease have unfortunately limited people’s freedom to gather and worship in large numbers in Mosques and Churches.

“Every measure that has been introduced to contain this disease may have its unintended consequences on the daily lives of our people, and I, therefore, call on Muslims and other faithful to continue to show more understanding with the government as we take correct steps to protect our people through the social distancing,” the President said.

 

A vendor displays his ram for sale at a livestock market in Anagada, Niger State ahead of the Eid Al-Adha celebrations on July 30th, 2020. Photo: Sodiq Adelakun/ Channels Television

 

Read Also: [PHOTOS] Muslims Get Set For Eid El Kabir Celebrations

He added: “No elected government would intentionally take away its people’s religious freedom by limiting the number of people that will gather in worship centres at the same time.

“The guidelines are dictated by necessity in order to safeguard public health and should, therefore, not be perceived as infringement on people’s right to worship.”

Commended the sacrifices of Muslims and Christians in abiding by the COVID-19 guidelines for the good of society, the president gave the assurance that his administration would continue to provide economic reliefs to the people.

“On our own part, we shall continue to provide economic reliefs to the people to minimize the unintended hardships these guidelines have inflicted.”

The President also reminded worshippers that COVID-19 is a worldwide affliction which has forced places of worship around the world to be shut down.

While wishing Muslims a happy celebration, the President called on worshipers not to forget the symbolic significance of the sacrifices of the Eidel Kabir.

“Muslims should imbibe the noble virtues of our great prophets in order to establish closer connectivity between religious teachings and practice,” he said.

“We can create the greatest impact by putting into practice the noble teachings of our religion. In whatever we do in life, we must put the fear of God in our daily activities to make our society better.’’

Speaking further, the President reminded Nigerians of his efforts to root out corruption in the country, stating that the efforts had so far brought a lot of changes in the country’s polity.

He appealed for more support and understanding as investigations are carried out on both legacy and fresh cases.

PHOTOS: Muslims In Abuja Gather To Pray As COVID-19 Restrictions Ease

Muslims gather to pray in Abuja on June 5, 2020. Photos: Sodiq Adelakun/ChannelsTV

 

Muslims on Friday gathered to pray at a mosque, as places of worship reopen following the gradual relaxation of restrictions imposed to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

This comes days after the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 released guidelines for the reopening of worship centers in the country.

 

The PTF, however, noted that it does not recommend that people should go to places of worship, but if they have to, they must adhere to the guidelines, some of which included the mandatory use of face masks by worshippers and provision of handwashing spots at the entrances.

 

 

Also, the use of hand sanitizers with at least sixty per cent alcohol content and mandatory temperature checks was advised.

 


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PHOTOS: Buhari, Top Officials Attend Juma’at Prayers At State House Mosque


The PTF also mandated that facilities be structured in a way that physical distancing can be observed and as much as possible, congregants avoid activities such a hugging, shaking or kissing.

It also noted that church/mosque volunteers (ushers, choir, security etc) that have underlying illnesses should not be allowed to serve, while the time for worship services should not be more than one hour.

 

Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari alongside the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) Ibrahim Magu, and other government officials also attended their first Juma’at prayers at the State House Mosque in Abuja on Friday since the restrictions.

 

See more photos below.

PHOTOS: Cleric Conducts Virtual Eid Sermon As Muslims Shun Praying Grounds

 

An Islamic cleric, Fuad Adeyemi, conducted a virtual sermon on Sunday to commemorate the Eid-El-Fitr.

Adeyemi is the Chief Imam of Al-Habbiyah Mosque in the Guzape District of Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

He gave his Eid sermon during a teleconference as Muslim faithful in Nigeria joined their counterparts across the world to celebrate the end of the Holy month of Ramadan.

This comes as Muslims shun praying grounds in the nation’s capital for the traditional congregational prayers, including that which is located at the National Mosque in Abuja.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Marks Eid-El-Fitr Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Their action was in line with the directive of the Head of Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI) and Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar III.

The sultan had suspended congregational prayers as part of measures to curb the further spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) in Nigeria.

See more photos below:

 

PHOTOS: Scores Of Muslims Storm Praying Ground In Nasarawa

A crowd of Muslim faithful storm a praying ground in Nasarawa State for the Eid-El-Fitr congregational prayer on May 24, 2020. PHOTO: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

 

As the world bids farewell to the fasting month of Ramadan, some Muslim faithful in Nigeria have participated in congregational prayers to mark this year’s Eid-El-Fitr.

In Nasarawa, scores of Muslim faithful stormed a praying ground for a congregational Eid prayer.

Congregational prayers also held in parts of the country despite the restriction on such gatherings by the Head of Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI) and Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar III.

The directive comes as part of measures to curb the further spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) such as social distancing and the use of face masks, among others.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Marks Eid-El-Fitr Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Eid-El-Fitr means “festival of breaking the fast” and celebrations would normally begin depending on the sighting of the moon.

However, this year’s occasion could not be celebrated as usual as some nations across the world have also suspended Eid prayers and outdoor festivals.

See photos of the activities at the praying ground in Nasarawa below:

A crowd of Muslim faithful storm a praying ground in Nasarawa State for the Eid-El-Fitr congregational prayer on May 24, 2020. PHOTOS: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

PHOTOS: Muslims Hold Congregational Eid Prayer In Katsina

Some Muslims gather at a praying ground in Katsina State in commemoration of the Eid-El-Fitr on May 24, 2020.

 

 

Muslim faithful in Katsina State have joined their counterparts across the globe to celebrate this year’s Eid-El-Fitr.

Hundreds of worshippers thronged the famous Usman Danfodio Juma’at Mosque to perform the two Raka’at Eid-El-Fitr prayers led by the Chief Imam, Ustaz Mukhtar Jibia.

The prayer held on the premises of the mosque on Sunday in the Katsina State capital.

In separate interviews with Channels Television, some of the worshippers described this year’s Eid as ironic, as they mark the end of the Holy month of Ramadan amid the coronavirus pandemic ravaging the world.

They commended the efforts of both the Federal and State governments in tackling the activities of bandits terrorising some states in the North West.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Marks Eid-El-Fitr Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

The residents also noted that the number of military personnel and other paramilitary apparatus deployed within the week to boost the fight against bandits was quite appreciable.

They, however, appealed to the government to double their efforts in the fight against kidnapping and cattle rustling in Katsina State.

Some of the highpoints of the Eid prayer are captured in the pictures below:

Some Muslims gather at a praying ground in Katsina State in commemoration of the Eid-El-Fitr on May 24, 2020.

Nigeria Marks Eid-El-Fitr Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

A crowd of Muslim faithful storm a praying ground in Nasarawa State for the Eid-El-Fitr congregational prayer on May 24, 2020. PHOTOS: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

 

Muslims in Nigeria have joined their counterparts around the world to mark the Eid-El-Fitr as they bid farewell to the fasting month of Ramadan.

However, this year’s occasion could not be celebrated as the usual practice due to the ravaging coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

In most nations across the world, authorities have taken measures, such as the suspension of Eid prayers and outdoor festivals among other celebratory events, to curb the spread of the disease.

Eid-El-Fitr means “festival of breaking the fast” and celebrations would normally begin depending on the sighting of the moon.

Traditionally, Eid is celebrated for three days in all Muslim-majority countries but in Nigeria, the government has declared Monday and Tuesday as public holidays.

In his Sallah message to the nation, President Muhammadu Buhari urged Muslims to keep their spirits up in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to him, the pandemic caught the world off guard and has dampened what would otherwise have been a time of celebration for the Muslim faithful.

The President noted that the pandemic has also taken a heavy toll on the people’s spiritual, social and economic lives.

He said this year’s fasting period was challenging for Muslims because they had to forgo many important aspects of their daily worship.

President Buhari listed them to include the routine congregations for prayer and the recitation and interpretation of the Holy Qur’an, as well as travelling for the lesser pilgrimage to Makkah.

He stressed that although it was not easy to give up many of those important duties and activities, it was important to do so to limit the spread of coronavirus in the country.

The President, therefore, commended the sacrifices of both Muslims and Christians for their cooperation in the enforcement of the social distancing guidelines.

As of Saturday night, Nigeria has reported 7,526 cases of COVID-19, out of which 2,174 people have been discharged and 221 patients dead.

The fight against coronavirus is still on and governments in many nations have continued to step up restrictions that will help curtail the spread of the disease.

They have also appealed to citizens, including Muslims to abide by all necessary guidelines for their safety as they celebrate Eid-El-Fitr.

PHOTOS: Muslim Faithful Sanitise Their Hands Before Juma’ah Prayers

PHOTO: Muslim faithful receive drops of hand sanitiser during Juma’ah prayers in Abuja. Channels TV/Sodiq Adelakun

 

Muslims in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, on Friday were seen practising the hand cleansing precautionary measures as efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus gathers momentum.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Wednesday characterised the COVID-19 outbreak as a pandemic due to its rapid spread globally.

After ablution, Muslims were asked to sanitise their hands before entering the mosque for Juma’ah Prayers.

READ ALSO: Nigeria’s Second Coronavirus Patient Tests Negative – Health Minister

Earlier, the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, said Nigeria has recorded success in tackling the Covid-19 virus, revealing that the person, who had contact with Nigeria’s index case, has tested negative and will soon be allowed to go home.

Dr Ehanire also revealed that the health condition of the index case is progressing and will be closely monitored till early next week when he is expected to be discharged too.

See photos below:

Indian Supreme Court Clears Way For Hindu Temple At Disputed Site

Supporters of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) organisation celebrate the Indian Supreme Court’s verdict on disputed religious site in Ayodhya awarded to Hindus, in Ahmedabad on November 9, 2019. India’s top court handed a huge victory to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist party on November 9 by awarding Hindus control of a bitterly disputed holy site that has sparked deadly sectarian violence in the past.
SAM PANTHAKY / AFP

 

India’s top court cleared the way on Saturday for a Hindu temple to be constructed at a hotly disputed holy site, in a huge victory for Hindu nationalists under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The Supreme Court ruled that the site in Ayodhya in northern India, where Hindu mobs destroyed a 460-year-old mosque in 1992, must be handed over to a trust to oversee the construction of a Hindu temple, subject to conditions.

A separate piece of land in Ayodhya would be given over to Muslim groups to build a new mosque, the court ruled in a historic judgement aimed at ending a bitter and decades-old legal and sectarian battle.

NASS Will Continue To Make Positive Impacts, Says Lawan

National Assembly Is Ready To Work For Nigerians – Lawan
A file photo of the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan. Photo: [email protected]

 

 

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has given assurance that the ninth National Assembly will continue to do everything possible to make positive impacts in the lives of Nigerians.

In a statement on Saturday by his Special Adviser on Media, Ola Awoniyi, he noted that the lawmakers would achieve this through appropriate legislations.

The Senate President felicitated with Muslim faithful on the commemoration of this year’s Eid-El-Maulud.

READ ALSO: Appeal Court Affirms Sanwo-Olu’s Election, Fines Appellants N2.4m

In his goodwill message, he urged Muslims and Nigerians, in general, to imbibe the virtues of peace, tolerance, justice, and love for one another as exemplified by Prophet Muhammad.

Senator Lawan said the birthday of the holy prophet should be an occasion for the renewal of commitment to ideals that would enhance peace and prosperity in the country.

He also asked Muslims, in particular, to always emulate the virtues of Prophet Muhammad which include honesty, love for others, and peaceful co-existence.

The Senate President said, “Prophet Muhammad preached and lived for peace and that is the virtue expected of every Muslim, particularly in a diverse society such as ours.

“This year’s occasion is another opportunity to further thank the Almighty Allah for his continued guidance and intervention in the challenges in our society.”

Eid-El-Kabir: ‘Extremism Is Like A Cancer,’ Buhari Challenges Muslims On Good Virtues

The President Needs To Rejig His Kitchen Cabinet – Oyebode
A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari.

 

 

The President has said the greatest commitment to Islam is for Muslims to put its good virtues into practice.

In his Eid-el-Kabir message on Saturday, he asked Muslims in the country to make justice and righteousness the guiding principle of their everyday life.

President Muhammadu Buhari made the remarks in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu.

“Extremism is like a cancer, which must be detected and destroyed from its early stages of growth,” he was quoted as saying in the statement.

He added, “We should be the mirror through which others see the good virtues of our faith.

“Islam is a religion of peace and we should avoid violent extremist ideas that give Islam a wrong name because our conducts leave more lasting positive impressions than what we say by word of mouth.”

READ ALSO: Flood Sweeps 15 Oil-Producing Communities In Imo

According to President Buhari, violent extremism is the greatest challenge facing Islam today and the only way to neutralise its evil influence is for the people to distance themselves from the activities and teachings of those who preach indiscriminate violence against innocent people.

He also advised parents to protect their children from the deadly exposure to violent extremists who manipulate and exploit such children for their evil agenda.

President Buhari noted that Boko Haram became a deadly force and a major security scourge because Muslim societies were indifferent from the beginning to the activities of extremist preachers.

He, however, assured Nigerians that his administration would uncompromisingly deal with terrorism, kidnappings and other forms of crime in the country.

Despite recent attacks by the insurgents, the President explained that Boko Haram has been “so militarily weakened and scattered” by the military.

He noted that the terrorists have lost the capacity to occupy any part of the country, adding that military personnel were getting more equipped and trained.

President Buhari, therefore, advised Muslims to be tolerant and continue to work for peace, unity, national integration, and peaceful coexistence.

Hajj Pilgrimage: Speaker Gbajabiamila, Aisha Buhari Meet In Mecca

 

Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and First Lady, Aisha Buhari, have met in Mecca where they are currently performing the hajj pilgrimage.

Photos of the meeting where share on the Twitter page of the Speaker.

His tweet reads:

With the First Lady @aishambuhari in Mecca. May Allah answer our prayers for unity peace and progress for our beloved country.

The First Lady was also in the holy land in May, when she and President Muhammadu Buhari performed the Umrah.

Below are photos from the meeting.

The Hajj

More than two million Muslims began the annual hajj Friday under sweltering conditions, as the Saudi hosts sought to deter politicisation of the pilgrimage against a backdrop of simmering Gulf tensions.

The hajj, one of the world’s largest annual religious gatherings, is one of the five pillars of Islam and must be undertaken by all Muslims with the means at least once in their lives.

It consists of a series of religious rites which are completed over five days in Islam’s holiest city and its surroundings in western Saudi Arabia.

“All of the arms of state have been deployed (and) we are proud to serve as ‘God’s hosts’,” said security forces spokesman Bassam Attia.

“We feel cleansed by achieving this pillar of Islam and meeting people from across the world. It’s marvellous,” said Mohamed Jaafar, a 40-year-old Egyptian pilgrim.

 ‘A golden opportunity’

“It’s an indescribable feeling. You have to live it to understand it,” said an Algerian in his fifties completing the pilgrimage for the first time.

“It’s a golden opportunity and moment,” said his female companion.

Built in a desert valley, Mecca is home to the Kaaba, a cube structure that is the focal point of Islam and draped in a gold-embroidered black cloth.

Muslims around the world pray towards the Kaaba, which is located in the Grand Mosque, and pilgrims walk around it seven times.

Earlier on Friday, worshippers took part in Friday prayers at the mosque.

Pilgrims from around the world then headed on foot or on buses to Mina, a rugged district of Mecca at the base of Mount Arafat, where the faithful will spend Friday night.

A total of “350,000 air-conditioned tents have been pitched” in Mina, a Saudi official said.

Cooling mist sprays were deployed across the area as temperatures exceeded 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit).

Mobile clinics and ambulances were on standby along the route, while Saudi Red Crescent helicopters monitored the pilgrims’ progress from the sky.

“The whole world is here… being here in Mecca is the best feeling,” beamed Mohamed Barry, a pilgrim from Britain.

Saudi officials said that 2.26 million pilgrims had arrived in Mina by late Friday, of which 1.86 million were from abroad, the state-run SPA news agency reported.

On Saturday worshippers will climb Mount Arafat, also known as the “Mount of Mercy”, for hours of prayers and Koran recitals.

After descending, they will gather pebbles and perform the symbolic “stoning of the devil”.

That marks the beginning of Eid al-Adha, the festival of sacrifice, marked on Sunday.

Pilgrims then return to the Grand Mosque to perform a final “tawaf” or walk around the Kaaba.

‘Politicising the hajj’

This year’s hajj takes place to a backdrop of Gulf tensions following a series of attacks on tankers, the downing of drones and the seizure of ships.

Riyadh blames regional foe Tehran for the attacks on commercial shipping, accusations Iran vehemently denies.

Despite the absence of diplomatic ties between the two countries, some 88,550 Iranian pilgrims are due to take part in the hajj this year according to Iran’s Tasnim news agency.

As in previous years, Saudi authorities have been at pains to stress that the hajj is a religious event and have sought to prevent its politicisation.

Riyadh insisted its two-year embargo on Doha — which includes restrictions on Qataris travelling to the kingdom — would not affect the pilgrimage.

But hajj official Hassan Qadi acknowledged “very few Qataris have come to Mecca for the pilgrimage”.

Saudi Arabia’s hajj ministry accused Qatar of “politicising the hajj and creating obstacles for Qatari pilgrims,” the official Saudi Press Agency reported.

The scale of the pilgrimage presents vast security and logistical challenges, with tens of thousands of safety officers deployed.

Riyadh faced strong criticism in 2015 when some 2,300 worshippers were killed in the worst stampede in the gathering’s history.

Colourful Celebration As Muslims Mark Eid

Children at the prayer ground to mark the EID celebrations. PHOTOS: Sodiq Adelakun/Channels TV

 

It was a colourful Eid-El-Fitr celebration in Abuja, the nation’s capital as Muslim faithful marked the end of their Ramadan fast.

Many thronged praying grounds across the country on Tuesday to thank God for the successful completion of the fast.

Read Also: Eid-El-Fitr: Buhari Urges Muslims To Put Humanity Before Personal Interests

See photos below.