Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has urged Muslims to use the month of Ramadan to pray for the country and its citizens.
“I call on one and all to remember that Nigerians are who would make Nigeria either great or dismal through our thoughts, words and actions.
“Virtues such as brotherly love and community spirit, without which a country shall be just a hollow shell,” Atiku said in a statement he personally signed.
On its part, the ruling All Progressives Congress urges Muslims that in observance of this year’s Ramadan fasting, they should pray for the peace, security and development of Nigeria.
In a statement by its spokesman, Lanre Issa-Onilu, the party said: “Ramadan is a time of spiritual reflection, improvement, sacrifice and increased devotion and worship. We implore Muslim Ummah to follow and apply the teachings of Islam in our relationship with our neighbours – Muslims and non-Muslims. We should remember and cater for the less-privileged in our midst, stay humble and abstain from all bad deeds”.
Atiku said further: “When we make ideals our goal this Ramadan, we will, by Allah’s grace, be able to reach a turning point in our individual, family and national lives that will bring about the rebirth of Nigeria as a nation that functions to provide peace, progress and prosperity to each and every citizen.
“Therefore, as we use this fasting period of Ramadan to master ourselves through discipline, abstinence, prayer and self-sacrifice, may Allah (SWT) hear our prayers and see us through so that we will finish what we started today in good health and a sound body.
“Some of our challenges may look like they will overwhelm us, but during the month of Ramadan, our connection and reconnection with Allah (SWT) makes our resolve stronger and our challenges weaker.
“May Allah bless you my brothers and sisters, may Allah bless Nigeria and may Allah hear your prayers. Amin”.
The APC maintained that it is the inalienable right of every human to safely go about daily activities and to live in peaceful coexistence with neighbours.
It adds: “Hence, in our places of worship, educational institutions, socio-political gatherings, markets, social media and all other public spaces, we must resist divisive agents and their equally divisive messages and actions.
“We must report to relevant authorities agents of destruction who disguise as ethnic or religious champions to achieve their diabolic, selfish and heinous agenda by exploiting our perceived differences.
“The cases of kidnappings, banditry, ethno-religious and resource-fuelled crises and other violent crimes recorded in some parts of the country are undoubtedly serious sources of concern. While the President Muhammadu Buhari administration is adopting multifaceted approach to permanently tackle the conflicts and crimes, the president has equally given marching orders to relevant security services to deal with these security threats and bring back normalcy to the affected areas.
“In different fronts of our national life, the President Buhari-led APC administration has laid a solid foundation for national development, peace and progress. The result is apparent in our strengthened economy, improved electioneering, refocused value system, waning corruption, social investments, massive infrastructure drive, better standing and influence in the comity of nations, in line with the promises contained in our Change Agenda for Nigerians. We are set to consolidate on work done so far and do more as we gear up for the Next Level of our renewed mandate.
“The APC urges Muslim Ummah and indeed all Nigerians of other faiths to continue to pray for our country and for wisdom, good health and safety of our leaders, all in our collective bid to take our dear country to its deserved heights”.