Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State has called on Muslim communities to uphold the legacies of late Chief Imam in the state, Sheikh Garba Akinola, especially on inter-religious and ethnic harmony.
Ambode made the call at the eight-day Fidau prayers held in honour of the late Chief Imam of Lagos State.
Sheikh Akinola, who was inaugurated as the 9th Chief Imam of Lagos on July 30, 2000, died on Sept. 24, at the age of 79.
Ambode, represented by his Deputy, Dr Idiat Adebule, said that the best way to honour and immortalise the late cleric was to uphold his known legacies of faithfulness, hard work, religious tolerance, fear of God, love for one’s country, state and community.
According to him, the late cleric also believed in mutual and peaceful co-existence among people, irrespective of their religions or tribes.
”We should continue to live together in peace, irrespective of religion or tribe; we should emulate all those virtues of the late Chief Imam and his strict adherence to the doctrines of Islam.
”The state government will continue to miss him for the noble role he played to promote inter-religious harmony in our state.
”He was a detribalised Nigerian, who used his vast knowledge of his religion, to promote peace and unity,” the governor said.
Ambode urged the executive committee of the Central Mosque, where the late Sheikh was holding forth before his demise, to remain committed to the principles of unity and religious harmony.
”Do not allow the death of the Chief Imam to bring disharmony to the community.
”As a government, we will not relent in promoting peaceful relationship among people of different tribes and religions in the state,’ ‘Ambode said.
In his sermon, the Chief Missioner of the Ansar-ud-deen Muslim Society of Nigeria, Sheikh AbdulRahaman Ahmad, advised Nigerians to face the reality and should not get entangled with material things.
According to him, always live life with the fear of God as death is inevitable.
”Let us always be conscious of the life after death.
“Every living soul will give accounts of his or her deeds on the day of judgement where material things like gold, houses, cars and love for power will be of no help,” he said.