President Goodluck Jonathan has asked all Muslims in Nigeria to offer special prayers for the country as they begin this year’s Ramadan fast today.
In a statement from his special adviser on media and publicity, Dr. Reuben Abati today, President Jonathan noted that Nigerian Muslims began the Ramadan fast against the background of security challenges in the country.
“I urge all Nigerian Muslims to offer special prayers during the period for greater peace and security in the nation. I also call on Nigerian Muslims to rededicate themselves in fuller measure to the virtues of piety, self-discipline, tolerance, equity, honesty, fairness and sympathy for the less privileged which the Holy month promotes.”
He noted that Muslims would be undergoing what he called “the strictures and spiritual purification” during the month, even as he reassured all Nigerians that his government would continue to work tirelessly to curb insurgency, terrorism and other criminal acts that have caused insecurity in parts of the country.
He called on Nigerians “not to succumb to despair, but to remain steadfast in the firm conviction that with courage, determination, focus, decisiveness and collective support for the Armed Forces and security agencies, the country will ultimately overcome the evil agents of sectionalism, sectarianism and international terrorism who seek to disunite the nation.”
The President prayed to God to grant Nigeria greater peace, security, unity and national harmony even as he wished the Muslim community a rewarding and spiritually gratifying Ramadan fast. [myad]