Sultan wants public holiday for Islamic New Year
Sultan of Sokoto and president-general of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Alhaji Sa'ad Abubakar, has lauded some state governors for declaring public holidays to mark the Islamic new year, Hijrah 1435 A.H.
In a statement by NSCIA acting Director of Publicity, Muhammad kabir Qasim, the eminent monarch said that the governors' gesture enabled Muslims in the states to have equal opportunity like their Christian counterparts to mark the new Islamic year.
He appealed to other state governors in the country to emulate their colleagues who declared holidays for Muslims in their states in the interest of unity, peace and justice.
Some of the states which declared public holiday on the first day of the Islamic calendar year, Muharram 1, are Sokoto, Kano, Zamfara, Niger and Osun.
The Sultan also felicitated with Nigerian Muslims and congratulated them for witnessing another new Hijrah year 1435 A.H.
He said: 'It is of good delight and gratitude to the Almighty Allah that another year has come to meet the Ummah in good stead and equanimity in spite of all odds.
'The occasion is a vivid reminder of what Hijrah represents in the lives of Muslims. Prophet Muhammad (SAW) had to emigrate from Makkah to Madinah in 622 CE after he exhausted his patience with the Makkah pagans who were persecuting him.''
The Sultan added: 'His endurance and steadfastness eventually paid off in Madinah where he succeeded in establishing an Islamic State with the first democratic constitution in the world based on truth and justice that formed the foundation for other subsequent constitutions in the world. Without his endurance and patience, only Allah knows what would have become of Islam today.''As the celebrate the Hijrah, the Sultan urged Muslims to emulate the patience and endurance of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) which propelled Islam to a very high level within the shortest period ever in history.