Shettima Urges Media Blackout On Dialogue With Terrorists
ADMONITIONS on the import of peace and security to national development have dominated Sallah messages as Muslims celebrate the Eid-el-Fitri to mark the end of Ramadan.
From the Borno State Governor, Kashim Shettima came a call on Muslims to sustain their prayers for peace in the embattled state.
A statement signed by his Special Adviser on Communications, Isa Umar Gusau, read in part:
“Rather than slow down, Muslims should use the spiritual rebirth gained in the Holy month of Ramadan to double their commitments to praying for Borno State and Nigeria at large beyond the Ramadan.”
“The search for peace,” he added, “is an endless obligation that should be shared by every individual and institution in Nigeria.”
On the part of government, Shetima said his administration was making deliberate and concerted efforts towards the amicable and quick resolution of the challenges in Borno.
For his part, Osun State governor Rauf Aregbesola noted that the pursuit of unity and peace should be uppermost in the mind of every citizen if Nigeria is to retrace its step to the path of glory, progress, growth and sustainable development.
Stressing that dialogue was the answer to the Boko Haram insurgency, Shetima, however, urged the media to “kindly ignore and not report efforts being made by any stakeholder towards achieving dialogue so as not to sabotage the process.”
“As I have consistently maintained, genuine dialogue remains the best option in resolving this crisis and we are assidously exploring all options to achieve peaceful resolution,” he said. But, “I believe the media has a responsibility to inform members of the public by searching for credible information and reporting it without any bias.”
And from the Kaduna State Governor, Patrick Ibrahim Yakowa came a plea from the people in the state to forget their ethnic and religious differences and join hands in the effort to develop the state.
Besides, the state government also ordered the payment of civil servants salaries to enable them celebrate sallah.
In a statement by the Senior Special Assistant on Media to the Governor, Mr. Reuben Buhari, the “Governor rejoices with the Federal Government of Nigeria, and the entire Muslim Ummah on the completion of the 2012 Ramadan Fasting and the celebration of the Eid-el-fitr festival,” while also “expressing gratitude to the entire Muslim Ummah for the prayers offered for the peace and progress of Nigeria in general and Kaduna State in particular.”
The Governor, according to Buhari, “is asking all to continue to put Kaduna state in focus and pay greater attention to the positive attributes that bind us together as a people, irrespective of religious or tribal differences, for the needed unity, progress and development of our state”.
The state Commissioner of Finance, Mr. John Ayuba also noted that on the directives of the his ministry has paid the salaries of civil servants for the month of august, 2012, saying that “this gesture by the Governor is to enable our Muslim brothers and sisters celebrate the Sallah (Ed-el-fitr) with their families after the month-long fasting period.”
Aregbesola, in a statement by the Director, Bureau of Communications and Strategy, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon, said as a nation, what the people, leaders and followers, need to do is to come together and forge a harmonious relationship for the good of the country.
He called on the Muslim faithful to draw abundantly from the lessons of Ramadan, which include spirit of commitment, Spartan discipline, obedience and love of Allah, and apply them to their fellow human beings irrespective of ethnic and religious differences.
Besides, the governor condemned in strong terms, what he described as ‘heinous killings prevalent across the country, especially the sectarian violence of the militant Boko Haram group in some states in the northern part of the country.
“I am always miffed by the activities of those who claim they are fighting on behalf of Allah. The Prophet Muhammad fought for his right to practise his religion; he never fought to compel people to worship according to the dictate of Islam,” the governor said.
“We should therefore come together and iron out our differences and resolve with strong conviction to work together as peoples from diverse backgrounds but with a common destiny.”
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