Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has urged Muslims to project Islam through the good examples of love, tolerance and peaceful disposition at all times, which he said are prerequisite for protecting the perception of the religion from distortion.
In his Sallah message to mark the end of the 30-day Ramadan fasting period, the former Vice President, while congratulating the Muslim faithful on the successful completion of the divine ordered abstention from foods and drinks, explained that the event should reinforce the fear of Allah in the hearts of the believers.
According to him, the virtues of the sacrifice should be sustained beyond the Ramadan by Muslims, adding that the fasting period makes believers appreciate the impact of hunger and be more committed to the hardships of millions who cannot feed themselves.
Atiku said the spirit of the Ramadan creates a bond of empathy between the haves and have-nots, explaining that compassion “is an important ingredient of our common humanity.”
The Waziri Adamawa also called on fellow Muslims to show greater commitment to peace, unity and tolerance in order to create harmony and understanding in the country. He said unity is a condition for building a formidable nation, adding that without unity, a country is politically vulnerable. He explained that in the absence of peace, even religion would be hard to practice, and that we should not take peace for granted at all times.
The former Vice President, who condemned religious extremists for giving Islam a bad name, advised Muslim parents to protect their children from the negative influences of those who preach hate and intolerance.
Atiku also called on political leaders at all levels and of all persuasion to have the fear of God and the love for the people in their activities.
While urging leaders to use power fairly and justly, the former Vice President also stressed the need for politicians to be accessible to the people instead of living in fortresses of power that detaches them from the reality of the people.
He stressed that leadership is about service to the people and there are numerous examples in the tradition of Prophet Muhammed SAW and his followers like Umar who left their comfort zones to feel the pulse of hardship on the poor in the society.
As we celebrate the eid-el-fitr on Friday, Atiku joins Muslim faithful in Nigeria to thank Allah SWT for a successful completion of the Ramadan fasting and ask that He accepts our act as sincere ibadah (worship).