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TREM calls for understanding of different cultures for unity



The Redeemed Evangelical Mission (TREM), Dream Centre, Festac Town, has called on Nigerians, particularly Christians, to learn about the uniqueness of other people’s culture, to help foster unity.

The Church made the call at its annual cultural day event, on Saturday in Lagos.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that the event tagged, ‘Cultural Megafest 4.0’ was aimed at promoting unity in diversity and giving the members an opportunity to learn about other cultures.

There were six groups, representing African Union, as well as the North-Central, South-south 1, South-south 2, South-east and South-west zones.

The groups comprised members of the church, randomly selected, to brainstorm and come up with activities to showcase, from cultures within the zones they represented.

Some of the activities showcased included; dance, drama, food and customs.

The Parish Pastor, Rev. Iyke Osuji, said Christians need to understand that there would not be only one tribe, nation or race in heaven but a gathering of people, who came from different cultures.

According to the Pastor, the reason people fight or find it difficult living with others from different cultures is because they don’t understand the uniqueness of each others’ culture.

“What we actually set out to show is a taste of heaven, because heaven will be made up of all nations, people, colours, and culture.

“Heaven is an all-inclusive phenomenon for humanity, we expect that every person on earth will have a taste of heaven.

“We want to show people that heaven is great, enjoyable, awesome and full of joy;  everyone should look forward to it because no one should be excluded.

“We should all embrace ourselves and come together in unity, irrespective of our culture, languages and nationalities, because we are one just like everyone on earth is one under heaven,” he said.

Osuji said it took the church two months to put the fourth edition together.

“This is actually the fourth edition and it takes us approximately two months to put this together.

“All we see here is that everybody belongs to a group that is not necessarily their culture or nationality, which gives them the opportunity to learn from other cultures.

“We are trusting God that one of these days, we will be at the National Stadium where more Nigerians can see us.

NAN also reports that the church had earlier organised a sports competition among the groups, to further promote unity among the church members and also help to keep them fit.

The activities included football, volleyball and table tennis.(NAN)

Edited by Oluwole Sogunle


Bauchi Muslim Pilgrims Board announces N1.5m deposit for 2020 Hajj



Bauchi State Muslims Pilgrims Welfare Board on Thursday announced a deposit of N1.5 million for 2020 Hajj.

Alhaji Isa Babayo-Tilde, Special Adviser on Pilgrims Affairs to Gov. Bala Muhammed of the state, announced this in Bauchi at the commencement of preparations for 2020 Hajj.

Babayo-Tilde further announced that intending pilgrims were expected to pay the deposit in three instalments before the end of January 2020.

He also announced that registration of intending pilgrims would commence on Friday,Nov. 15, in all headquarters of the 20 Local Government Areas in the state.

Babayo-Tilde urged all interested intending pilgrims to register at the  centres.

He revealed that the board had acquired five hectares of land close to Abubakar Tafawa Balewa International Airport, Bauchi, for the construction of a befitting Hajj Camp.

The special adviser assured that the camp, to be equipped with modern facilities, would be completed before the end of 2019.

He commended officials of the board over success recorded during the 2019 operations, and urged them to sustain the tempo in 2020.

The Acting Executive Secretary of the board, Alhaji Alkassim Shall, had earlier announced that 2,010 seats had been allocated to the state for the pilgrimage next year as against the 3,090 seats in 2019.

He recalled that the board recorded death of four persons out of the 1,987 pilgrims that performed 2019 Hajj.

Shall also recalled that some intending pilgrims, which figure was not given,  died before the commencement of the operations.

He stated that in spite of hitches experienced during 2019 Hajj, the exercise recorded success, and that the board had received commendations from some organisations.

Shall warned intending pilgrims against last minute rush for the payment fares as experienced this year.

He said such last minute rush had made it cumbersome to officials of the board in obtaining Visas  and other documents for the pilgrims.

The Secretsry warned officials of the board against unwholesome practices that might thwart the success of the operations.

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Eid-el-Maulud: MURIC urges youth to embrace FG’s SIP



Prof. Ishaq Akintola, the Director, Muslims Rights Concern (MURIC), on Monday urged Nigerians to embrace the Federal Government’s empowerment programmes in order to reduce the rate of unemployment in the country.

Akintola made this appeal in a statement made available to newsmen in commemoration of the 2019 Eid-el-Maulud in Abuja.

He advised youths to take advantage of the Federal Government’s Social investment Programme (SIP), especially the youths empowerment programmes, instead of engaging themselves in dangerous journey abroad in search of greener pastures.

“Instead of running round in circles looking for white-collar jobs or embarking on suicidal trips across the Sahara Desert and the Mediterranean Sea, we urge Nigerians to embrace government’s empowerment programmes.

“The advanced facilities, which Nigerians crave in Europe and America were not produced by an indolent citizenry or a cynical labour force. They are products of dogged industry.

“Sitting down idly and waiting for manna to fall from heaven via endless visitations to miracle centres and Asalatu grounds will not bring the change we need,” the MURIC director said.

He urged Nigerians to embrace programmes initiated by the Federal Government instead of endless search for white-collar jobs, thereby remaining jobless and idle.

“Prophet Muhammad whom we are celebrating today hated laziness with a passion.

“He toiled relentlessly as a youth, and worked harder even after marriage because he condemned begging and encouraged hardwork.

“This is why Nigerian Muslims in particular and other citizens have no business begging around or remaining idle when the opportunities offered by the Federal Government are there,” he said.

Akintola congratulated Muslim Faithful on the Maulud celebrations, and urged them to imbibe the good virtues of Prophet Muhammad who preached peace, tolerance and forgiveness during his lifetime.

“We urge Nigerians to emulate Prophet Muhammad’s philosophy of the dignity of labour. In view of the government’s aggressive economic empowerment for citizens and investment partnership with foreign countries.

“We, therefore, invite Nigerians from all strata of society to avail themselves of the opportunities, because this is the only way to turn the country to a nation of producers after being a consumer nation for so long,” the MURIC director stressed.

Editing by Oluyinka Fadare/Felix Ajide

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Obaseki felicitates with Muslims on Eid-el-Maulud



Obaseki felicitates with Muslims on Eid-El-Maulud

By Nefishetu Yakubu
Benin, Nov.11, 2019 Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo on Monday urged Muslims in the state to emulate the good morals and teachings of tolerance of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W).

In a statement made available to the Nigeria News Agency in Benin, Obaseki urged Muslim faithful to continue to show love and good neighbourliness espoused in Islam as they celebrate the birth of Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W).

He urged them to commit themselves to the teachings of the prophet not just as a matter of religious obligation but a means to promote peaceful living in a multicultural society.

“I felicitate with our Muslim brothers and sisters in Edo State and across Nigeria on this day set aside to celebrate the birthday of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W).”

“This occasion, once again, reminds us all of the virtues of the Prophet, which we should emulate in advancing love, peace and progress of the state and country.

“Muslims constitute a major force for peace and progress wherever they may be, and we are glad that our Muslim brothers and sisters have been an integral part of our march to development in the state,” he said.

Obaseki encouraged Muslims to continue to eschew acts and behaviours that undermine the unity and progress of the society.

The governor, however, expressed appreciation to Muslims for supporting his administration’s policies and programmes aimed at building a total and sound society in Edo.

Edited by Felix Ajide

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2020 Hajj: Kwara Pilgrims Board to disqualify intending Pilgrims with ill health— Official



The Kwara Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board says intending pilgrims without clean certificate of health will be disqualified from performing the 2020 pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia.

Alhaji Mohammed Tunde-Jimoh, the Executive Secretary of the Board, stated this in llorin on Monday, shortly after a meeting with Hajj coordinators from the 16 local government areas of the state.

Nigeria News Agency reports that the meeting, which was also attended by Hajj registration officers across the state, was aimed at reappraising Hajj activities in 2019 and preparation for the 2020 Hajj operation.

The Executive Secretary said the disqualification of intending Pilgrims without clean certificates of  health was to save them from the rigours during the Hajj rites that could worsen their conditions or lead to death.

He advised individuals, groups or organisations intending to sponsor pilgrims to the 2020 Hajj to be sure of their health status in the interest of the beneficiaries.

“The Board will not process traveling document of any intending Pilgrims to 2020 Hajj exercise found not to be medically fit or confirmed to be afflicted with one ailment or the other,” he said.

Tunde-Jimoh explained that the development followed the decision of the Saudi Arabia authority to no longer be responsible for the care of sick pilgrims brought into their country.

He advised aged persons among the intending Pilgrims to make arrangements for a relation to accompany them and to care for them while in the holy land.

Tunde-Jimoh also appealed to Hajj coordinators and registration officers in the local councils to be honest with their clients and allow the fear of God to guide their dealings with the intending pilgrims.

Edited by Remi Koleoso/Bayo Sekoni

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Bauchi govt. to construct permanent Hajj camp



The Bauchi State government has pledged to commence the construction of a modern permanent Hajj camp in the state.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that the camp is to be sited close to Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa International Airport in Bauchi.

Malam Isa Tilde, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Pilgrims Affairs, was quoted to have said this in a statement issued on Sunday by Mr Muhammad Yunusa, the Information Officer, Bauchi State Muslim Pilgrims Welfare Board (BSMPWB).

The statement said that the project would provide a conducive atmosphere for the intending pilgrims and officials during hajj operations in the state.

According to the statement, Tilde also said that the project was part of the Gov. Bala Muhammed-led administration’s plan to take the state to the next level.

“I’m very optimistic that the camp, which is close to Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa International Airport, will provide a conducive operating environment to the intending pilgrims and officials.

“This administration is determined to completing the project on time, with a view to accommodating the 2020 intending pilgrims to Saudi Arabia,” he said.

The special adviser also assured of prompt payment of compensation to the land owners.

Edited by Fatima Sule and ‘Wale Sadeeq

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Eid el-Maulud; Chief Imam urges Nigerians to exhibit trust, selflessness



Sheik Abdul Isola, Chief Imam of Islamic Centre, Uwani, Enugu, has urged Nigerians to emulate the exemplary lifestyle of Prophet Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him (PBUH) by exhibiting trust and selflessness.

Isola gave the admonition on Sunday in Enugu while speaking with the Nigeria News Agency on the celebration of 2019 Eid el-Maulud.

NAN reports that Eid el-Maulud is the celebration of birthday of Prophet Muhammad PBUH.

The cleric noted that the Prophet left a practical and shining example of trust while discharging his ministry on earth.

“The lack of trust and fear of God among us as Nigerians have continued to breed all sorts of negativity in the country.

“Leaders should exhibit trustworthiness by delivering what belongs and is meant for the people to them.

“While the lead, should reciprocate, by praying for the leaders and obeying simple civic laws and instruction meant for the betterment of all,’’ Isola, who is also the Chief Missioner of the Centre, said.

He noted that Nigerians must learn to be selfless as Prophet Muhammad PBUH; which endeared him to everyone that came in contact with him.

“Be your brother’s keeper. Do not keep acquiring wealth without using it to better the lives of those within your immediate environment,’’ he said.

The cleric, however, enjoined leaders especially political office holders to use the people’s wealth entrusted on them judiciously and for the common good of all.

“They should take practical steps on the creation of employment and other forms of engagement for the youths in order to check restiveness and idleness that breeds crime and criminality,’’ he added.

Edited by Ali Baba-Inuwa

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