The Sultan of Sokoto and Chairman, National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria, NCTRN, Alhaji Muhamad Sa’ad Abubakar, has told Nigerians particularly the masses in the streets of the country that ethnic and religious differences among the people are not and cannot be a mistake by God.
He said they should rather strengthen but not weaken the population and said the only thing required is for the leaders, political, ethnic and traditional, to do what is necessary in maintaining peace and stability in the country.
The Sultan spoke Wednesday at the National Summit on Security and (In)security in Nigeria, held at Centre for Black Culture and International Understanding, Osogbo, the Osun State capital.
Mounting the podium, the Sultan said there is no better club in any society than traditional institution and seized the occasion to formally welcome the Olowo of Owo Kingdom, Ondo State, who he described as the newest and most recent recruited member, into the club.
He told the filled-to-capacity hall that there can be no tribe or person better than the other, “we are all equal before Allah” and so, he said, “God doesn’t make mistakes but you must just live in peace with one another by tolerating yourselves.”
He insisted that there could be no other way forward for Nigeria than when its people coexist peacefully regardless of their differences.
He said Nigerians have got to rather emphasize what is common among them, ethnically and religiously, than talk about that which separate them as no one can blame God for making the community of man the way He has made it.
The Ameerul Mu’muneen of Nigeria stated this just as he expressed readiness of himself and his fellow members of the traditional institution to continue to partner government to enhance security in the country.
He delved more on the need for the political class, who are holders of state powers, to ensure good governance and justice, adding that doing this has a faster way to achieving enduring national security.
He however urged the citizens to rise to the occasion and play their own part of the duty by speaking up with one voice in all honesty and fear of God to ensure permanent peace in Nigeria.
He also called for proper upbringing of the young ones, saying the gesture would go a long way to prevent vices in the society.
Sultan Abubakar maintained that the time had come for all leaders and followers to follow the path that would continue to promote peace, unity, and tranquillity, particularly in the wake of serious security situation currently faced in the country.
Earlier before the Sultan on podium were Ooni and Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, who in their various speeches, said since government had failed to provide security, the effort by six governors of the South West to give security to their people was in order.
The Ooni, who is Co-Chairman of the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria, particularly recalled that before the political class came to take powers of government from the traditional rulers, security of community was well handled and ensured by traditional institution. He said if need be, they should consult the monarchs because now, he said, “we are ready to work with government in giving security and peace to people of Nigeria.”
He said that brought him to the concept, “Amotekun”, which he said was not about breaking Nigeria up, “because Nigeria will never break”.
Osun State Governor, Mr. Gboyega Isiaka Oyetola in his own address, called for holistic approach in the quest to end security challenges in the country.
He urged Nigerians particularly the stakeholders and security agencies to partner the traditional rulers in the fight against the scourge.
Oyetola, who spoked as host governor, the host governor, told the audience why his state never recorded cases of farmers/herders clashes and said Fulani and Yoruba in Osun, due to the approach, had related well with one other in peace and harmony.
He said for the country to overcome the menace, security agencies must collaborate with the traditional rulers, sensitise and encourage their subjects to provide intelligence and expose the criminals in their domains.
He lauded the organisers of the summit for the initiative, advising that the programme should be held regularly both at state and national levels as a way of enhancing security in the country.
”The state of Osun holds traditional rulers in high esteem as the embodiments and custodians of our culture, tradition and our Omoluabi ethos which make us tick,” Governor Oyetola added.
Dignitaries also present included the Owa Obokun of Ijesha Land, Aragbiji of Iragbiji, Olowo of Owo, Osemawe of Ondo, Timi of Ede, Ataoja of Osogbo, Alayemoren of Ido-Osun, Ile-Ife, Oluwo of Iwo Land, JAMB Registrar Professor Is-haq Oloyede and many others at the event where Bisi Olatilo, two other media practitioners and a linguist directed.