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Ramadan: Political apathy, a great sin against God—Cleric

 

Ramadan: Political apathy, a great sin against God—Cleric

An Islamic cleric and scholar, Sheilk Al-Imam Ahmad Abdulateef (Sododo) says political apathy is a great sin in the sight of God and could be punished by him.

Abdulateef, the Chief Imam, Onikoyi Estate, Iba Local Council Development Area (LCDA) in Ojo Local Government, spoke at the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) Inaugural Annual Ramadan Lecture at Igando in Lagos on Wednesday.

Abdulateef, delivering a lecture on “Synergy Between Politics and Islam- A Way of Serve Humanity” said that Islam allowed its adherents to do politics and be part of the decision-making processes.

The guest speaker, who is also a PhD Student of Islamic Education, Lagos State University, noted that religion and politics remained intertwined, urging God-fearing people to get involved.

Stating that politics was to make life better, Abdulateef said that only good leaders could make lives and the country better.

“Let us do politics, if we do not do it, we will all suffer for the negligence. Let us join hands together to put right leaders in positions of authority. It is compulsory.

“If we should go by the injunction of Quran 3 verse 104, it implies that citizens are enjoined to elect their leaders.

“In Nigeria, it is the obligation of every eligible citizen to register and pick the PVC ( Permanent Voter Card) to vote during elections.

“So, it is a law from Allah that, when you are in the country and there must be a leader either through voting or selection, you participate and vote.

“For every eligible citizen who fails to take their PVCs or have the PVCs but do not vote, it is a great sin in the sight of Allah. Such should seek forgiveness because it is a serious sin,” the cleric said.

According to him, Nigerians, especially Islamic faithful, should perform their civic right, which is also in line with God’s injunction.

“It does not speak well that we need to be begging people to pick their PVCs and vote during election. Some even demand money to be paid them before they exercise their franchise in elections,” he added.

Highlighting the duties of a good leader, Abdulateef said that elected or appointed politicians must serve the people and prioritise their welfare above their personal needs.

According to him, Nigerians political class should see their privileged position as opportunity to serve rather than becoming bosses to the people they are meant to serve.

“The leadership must prioritise security and welfare of the people, especially provision of basic social amenities like good roads, portable water, constant electricity among others.

“A good leader should not separate himself or his abode from the people he is leading. Don’t run away from them.

“Our leaders must do all they can to establish peace and pursue it in the society.

“They must serve everyone in the society including those who did not vote for them,” he said.

The cleric added that citizens must be ready to follow their leaders and respect laws of the land.

“Leaders must see the people as humans and not slaves while citizens must also be law abiding and fear God.

“The citizens must obey every law of the land, protect public facilities, pay taxes and pay their part in making Nigeria a great nation,” he added.

According to him, good leaders do not distribute or spray money to citizens but build sustainable institution and programmes to address the need of the citizens.

The cleric urged Nigerian citizens to avoid vandalism of public property but rather protect them.

Counseling the incoming administration of President-elect, Sen. Bola Tinubu and the 10th National Assembly, the Imam said that paramount attention must be given to security, unity, peace and good governance.

The cleric, who commended and prayed for the ZLP Chairman, Mr Mode Adenipebi, for organising a Ramadan Lecture being a Christian, said that such character would do well if given position of authority.

In his remarks, , Adenipebi, the Lagos State Chairman of ZLP and the 2023 Gubernatorial Candidate of the party said that the motif of the Ramadan lecture was to see the link between religion and politics to better the society.

Adenipebi, who noted that religion played a key role in politics in Nigeria, said that the lecture would be annual ritual.

According to him, service to humanity is what all religions preach, and politicians should also toe that path by providing basic needs of the people.

“Politicians must have contentment and make lives comfortable for the people. There should be no greed or corruption. Politics should be 100 per cent service to humanity,” Adenipebi said.

 

 

 

 

 

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