By Salisu Sani-Idris
Abuja – The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III, has urged Nigerians to have positive attitude to nation building, as the country marks its 60th Independence Anniversary on Oct. 1.
Represented by the Etsu Nupe, Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar, the Sultan made the call at the 60th Independence Day Public Lecture and Special Jumma’at Prayer held at the Abuja National Mosque Auditorium, on Friday in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme of the Independence anniversary lecture was “Together Nigeria at 60: The Imperative of Building a Nation Together”.
Sultan, who is also the President-General, Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), emphasised the need for Nigerians to contribute towards bringing peace, security, stability and development to the country.
” We observe this anniversary with the intention to reappraise how far we have come, where we are now and where do we intend to go in the areas of health, agriculture, industry and other infrastructures.
” We urge the Nigerian people to observe and strictly collectively and individually change their attitude to nation building.
” In whatever field of endeavour we find ourselves, we must have positive attitude and contribute to what would actually bring peace, security, stability and development to the country
” We must recollect and sit-down to think deeply where are we now and where do we want to go in terms of enhancing the standard of living of our people.”
According to the Sultan, the 60th years of independence in a nation of about 200 million population is a great task and achievement.
” The attainment of political independence 60 years ago was expected to move the country forward with all the resources both human and material to advance and enhance the standard of living of our people.
” We appreciate and thank the Almighty Allah for sparing our lives up to this moment and we pray to Allah to reward the forefathers of this nation, who struggle to build the country.
Prof. Shehu Galadanchi, General Administrative and Spiritual head of the Abuja National Mosque, urges politicians to promote peaceful coexistence for the progress and development of the country.
“Nigeria is definitely in need of everybody to come forward together to continue to build a very strong and united nation and this is the time to really come together to move the country forward.”
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SFG), Mr Boss Mustapha, expressed deepest appreciation to the Sultan of Sokoto and the entire Nigerian Muslims for their historic contributions towards the development of the country.
Mustapha said it was in realisation of the importance of religious leaders in national life that the present administration had continued to work and support the activities of the Nigeria’s Inter-Religious Council.
Other dignitaries at the special prayers were the Chief Justice of the Federation, Justice Mohammed Tanko, the Minister of State for Works, Alhaji Abubakar Ali, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila and the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed.
Others are the Minister of State, Science and Technology, Alhaji Abdullahi Mohammed, FCT minister Muhammad Bello, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha.