….urges them to pray for prosperous Nigeria
Chief Imams across Nigeria have been admonished to always strive hard to upgrade their knowledge, pray for the nation and preach in accordance with the teachings and practices of the holy Prophet Muhammad so as to have a praceful united, and prosperous nation.
The Chief Imam of Offa, Sheikh Muhideen Salaman gave the admonition in his key note address at a workshop organised by Hijrah Organization of Nigeria for Chief Imams across the 16 Local Government Areas of kwara State held at IMAN Center, Ilorin.
Imam Salman who explained that sound and qualitative knowledge is the necessary ingredient for effective leadership, implored all Imams to see their emergence as Imam, the beginning of their continuous thirst for knowledge.
According to him, an Imam without prerequisites knowledge about the position is an empty barrel adding that such Imam does not qualify to lead congregation.
While identifying continuous improvement in knowledge as an instrument for the effective leadership, Imam Offa admonished Imams to refrain from habit of politicising Khutbah or saying the irrelevant on the podium during Jumuah khutuba (Sermon).
He disclosed that an Imam must possess qualities of being humble, kindhearted, respectful, fear of Allah, knowledgeable, adding that he must also have spirit of forgiveness.
The Kwara State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq who was represented at the occasion by the Permanent Secretary, State Ministry of Health, Dr Abubakar Ayinla, commended the organisers for the initiative, saying that the programme was in line with his administration’s commitment for religious harmony.
In his lecture at the event, Professor Hamzat Abdulraheem who doubles as the Chief Imam of the Kwara State University (KWASU) urged Imams to attach utmost priority to Islamic knowledge especially the Arabic language.
He said it is expected that every Imam should be able to communicate effectively with Arabi language, pointing out that if others couldn’t, an Imam who is leader of religion should give priority to Arabic language along side Islamic laws.
Also in his lecture, the Former Grand Kadi of the Kwara State Shariah Court of Appeal, Justice Idris Abdullahi Haroon enjoined Imams to see their position as a call to service and the only to perform optimally is to equip themselves with sound knowledge of Islam.
Speaking earlier, the Imam Gambari of Ilorin, Sheikh AbdulAzeez Sulaiman appreciated the organisers and urged them to make the workshop a continuous exercise.
Giving the rationale behind the event, the Chairman of Hijrah Organization of Nigeria, Professor Badmas Lanre Yusuf said the workshop was organised to enhance competence and leadership qualities of Imams across the state.
Professor Yusus disclosed that 120 Chief Imams drawn across the 16 Local Government Areas of the state participated in the workshop.
Highlights of the event included special prayers for the peace and tranquility in the country and for the successful tenure of the new government in Nigeria under President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara state.