By Jimoh Sulyman
The people of Kwara State and Ilorin in particular, across the two major religions, has been urged to be advocates of peace and harmony wherever they may find themselves.
The call was made by the Chief Imam of Jamiu Irewolede Mosque, Imam Isiaq Sulyman Yayi Olosun on Friday in Ilorin, while delivering his Khutbah (sermon) to the congregation just before leading them in the weekly two-unit prayer.
The cleric who sued for mutual understanding between the Muslims and Christians warned that the brewing rancour between the two faiths could be disastrous if not well managed adding that “We need to create a sense of mutual understanding between us, if we allow this issue of Hijab to degenerate further, the result might be disastrous for the two faiths”.
“Reaching a middle ground between the two quarreling parties is for the good of everyone as it will douse this raging tension that is on ground, which can be felt by everyone”, he noted.
He also bemoaned the subsequent closure of the schools involved in the issue by government pointing out that the decision was a loss from both end.
“If you look at this school closure, it is doing no one any good. All these missionary schools have as many Muslim students as they have Christians and this school closure is affecting everyone especially the students who are already behind schedule due to the effect of the pandemic which led to initial closure and such a move is detrimental to their academic progress.
Olosun also questioned the effect of religious misunderstanding on the perspective of the students, “Because such might start breeding a sense of disdain in them towards people of other faiths.
“What message are we passing to these children, because most of these children have friends across different faiths without any problem but this situation can start sowing seed of disdain between among them”.
The Imam advised the people to always remember the hereafter and its importance, since the life we’re living in is just for a short time but the hereafter is for eternity.
“All what we’re doing on earth is all in anticipation for the Day of Qiyamah, this earth we’re in is not our home, it is just a path in our journey, the hereafter is our final abode.
The Islamic Scholar also harped on the importance of the noble Prophet Muhammad (SAW), who is a giver of glad tidings and admonition from Allah to all of humanity adding that “he was a messenger sent to us, to lead us to the right path according to the Qur’an and hadith.
“What the Prophet brought to us is a straight path to Paradise without an inkling of doubt. He will move us away from torment of hell as far as possible and that is his main objective on earth and the essence of his message”.
According to Olosun, while emphasizing on need for peace and unity, “The Prophet enjoined brotherhood among the Muslim community and between them and the other faiths, especially the People of the Book (Christians and Jews) with whom he shared close relationship and friendship”.
He also urged the people to be conscious of the nobleness of the Islamic month of Rajab and its importance.
“From the tradition of the noble Prophet Muhammad and narrated by Ibn Abass, “In the month of Rajab, If one fast for a day it will be recompensed with forgiveness of a year’s sins, if one fast for two days it will be rewarded forgiveness of two years, if one fast for three days, it result in as many years of forgiveness and so on. As much as we’re fasting, that is how close we will be getting to Allah and that is how close Allah will be to us too.
“This is a month of Allah, the Prophet enjoined us to increase in good deeds, however the fasting is not mandatory, and one of the essence of the month is to purify us and unburden us from our loads of sins and also to foster a better relationship between us and our creator in anticipation of the month of Ramadan”. He added.
By Jimoh Sulyman