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Soludo urges Churches to Promote Unity for Healthy Nation 

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Charles Soludo, the Governor of Anambra, has called on the churches to have spirit of ecumenism to build a healthy nation.

Soludo made the call at a Holy Eucharistic Thanksgiving Services for His Grace, Most Revd Alexander Ibezim, on his 60th birthday in Awka on Sunday.

Newsmen report that ecumenism is the principle or aim of promoting unity among the world’s Christian Churches.

Newsmen report that the thanksgiving service was a wrap up of a week-long ceremony to mark Ibezim’s 60th birthday, three years of Archiepiscopacy, 12 years of Episcopacy, amongst others.

Soludo commended the giant strides of the cleric of the Anglican Diocese of Awka, who has through his 38 years in God’s vineyard, 12 years of Episcopacy and three years of Archiepiscopacy, improved the society.

The governor said that if churches could promote ecumenism, irrespective of their denominations, it would be a link bridge to enthrone peace, unity and progress of the nation.

He appealed to the churches not to relent but to always pray fervently for the nation’s unity and development.

Soludo said that the state would not be tired of fighting insecurity, urging the people to join hands with the state government to fight insecurity in the state.

“There is nothing like unknown gunmen, the gunmen are known; you should report any suspicious character around you and save the state pains of insecurity,” he said.

The governor said that Anambra would be 31 years of its creation on Aug. 27, assuring the people that his administration would make schools, road network and other basic amenities, its priority.

“I will not celebrate now, but will celebrate when poverty is chased out of the state by making every one economically fit to fend for his family.

“When the work of seen  growth and development is rooted in all sectors of Anambra’s economy,” he said.

In a sermon, Most Revd Henry Ndukuba, the Archbishop Metropolitan and Primate of All Nigeria Anglican Communion, encouraged Ibezim to stand strong in the things of God and ensure that his light do not dim.

Ndukuba, also urged religious leaders and the laity to give quality support to the cleric for him to fulfill his calling into the vineyard of God.

He urged all political leaders present to serve responsibly, saying they are to give account of their stewardship.

Ndukuba urged the faithful to support the church to build a healthy society through its developmental projects in Awka Diocese.

The Archbishop said that over 10 projects were inugrauated and dedicated including, Mary Summer Vocational Institute Awka; Millennium Nursing School; Renaissance Modern Polytechnic,Mbaukwu; Anglican Village; Faculty of Law, Paul’s University; Chapel of Redemption, among others.

“All these projects would not only offer quality education to youths, but also wealth creation and spiritual growth of the people; it is a noble action by the diocese,” he said.

In his remarks, Ibezim assured the church that he would not relent in evangelism and social development as a way to promote the gospel till it gets to nooks and crannies of the state.

He said that the years spent in the vineyard of God and his 28 years of progressive marriage union “encourages him to serve God more”.

Also, Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta, attended the programme, where he urged the faithful to always pray for oneness of the nation as spiritual leaders.

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Eid-el-Kabir:  Tinubu, Leaders Preach Peace, Religious Tolerance

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By Laide Akinboade, Abuja

As Nigerins joined the rest of the world to celebrate this year’s Eid-el-Kabir, President Bola Tinubu, state governors, top government functionaries as well as other notable Nigerians have called for peace and religious tolerance to enhance peaceful coexistence.

The Eid-el-Kabir festival is celebrated by Muslims worldwide on the 10th day of the Hijri month of Dhual-Hijjah in the Islamic calendar.

Tinubu, the Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Dr. Obafemi Hazmat, the former state governor, Babatunde Fashola, and the Chairman of Dangote, Aliko Dangote, joined hundreds of Muslim faithful to observe Eid prayers in Ikoyi axis of the state yesterday.

Other dignitaries present at the Dodan Barracks ground in Ikoyi were the Chief of Staff to the President, Femi Gbajabiamila, National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu; former lawmaker, Gbenga Ashafa, the former Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Adeyemi Ikuforiji amongst others.

Accompanied by top government functionaries, the President arrived at the Eid praying ground at about 8:55 am yesterday with cheers from many worshippers who trooped to the venue to pray and catch a glimpse of the Nigerian leader.

The President enjoined Nigerians to reflect on the essence of the occasion of Eid-el-Kabir, which bears strong meaning and significance for the nation.

CAN President, Calls for Unity in Challenging Times

Relatedly, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) yesterday urged all Muslim faithful to unite in challenging times and focus on God for a better Nigeria.

President, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Archbishop Daniel Okoh in his goodwill message to celebrate Eid-el-Kabir, made available to journalists in Abuja.

He appealed that everyone should set aside their differences, heed the call for unity and peace, and trust in God’s promise for a better Nigeria, because  the nation is in dire need of God’s mercy, peace, and unity.

 “As Muslims all over the world celebrate Eid-el-Kabir, a festival symbolizing sacrifice, obedience, and faith, I, on behalf of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), extend warm felicitations to our Muslim brothers and sisters.

“On this auspicious occasion, I urge all Nigerians to embody the values of sacrifice, obedience, and faith in our daily lives. Let us set aside our differences, heed the call for unity and peace, and trust in God’s promise for a better Nigeria. Our nation is in dire need of God’s mercy, peace, and unity.

“In the face of current challenges, let us unite in love, forgiveness, and reconciliation. Let us pray for divine intervention in our security, economic, and political struggles. May God’s comfort and strength support the displaced, the bereaved, and the traumatized.

“As the Muslim Ummah celebrate this festival, let us remember that our nation deeply needs God’s mercy, peace, and unity. Let us work together to build a Nigeria where all citizens can thrive, regardless of religion, tribe, or creed. Our diversity is strength, and together, we can overcome any obstacle.

“I call on all Nigerians to embrace peace, love, and forgiveness. Let us pray for divine intervention in our national struggles and strive towards building a united and prosperous Nigeria. Let us remember the displaced, bereaved, and traumatized, offering them our support and solidarity,” The statement read.

The CAN boss who prayed that God bless Nigeria and grant the nation peace, unity, and prosperity.

Almajiri Commission Calls for Enhanced Commitment to Education

In the spirit of Eid-el-Kabi, the Executive Secretary/CEO of National Commission for Almajiri and Out-of-School Children’s Education (NCAOOSCE), Dr. Muhammad Sani Idris, has called on all stakeholders to renew their dedication to education as a fundamental right for every child.

He said this in a statement issued to commemorate Eid-el-Kabir.

“Education remains the cornerstone for unlocking the potential of our youth and empowering them to contribute meaningfully to society.”

 “As we commemorate Eid-el-Kabir, a celebration of sacrifice and faith, I extend warm greetings to all Nigerians, with special recognition for the Almajiri and out-of-school children, who are central to our Commission’s mission,” he said.

While acknowledging President Bola Tinubu’s efforts to eradicate the challenges faced by Almajiri and out-of-school children in Nigeria, he said his commitment to education and human capital development underscores his administration’s dedication to the welfare of all Nigerians, especially the most vulnerable.

Looking forward, the National Commission for Almajiri and Out-of-School Children’s Education (NCAOOSCE)

The Executive Secretary reaffirmed the commitment of the commission to enrol 10 million out-of-school children in school by 2027, saying, “We are actively working to integrate Western education into the Almajiri school curriculum, ensuring a comprehensive educational experience that prepares these children for a brighter future.”

He said they would continue to collaborate tirelessly with stakeholders, including the Federal Ministry of Education, state governments, and development partners, to address the multifaceted challenges faced by the vulnerable children.

He said: “President Tinubu’s leadership and unwavering support have been instrumental in advancing our goals thus far. Together, we are confident in our ability to make a significant impact and ensure that every child has access to quality education, regardless of their background or circumstances.”

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Bishop Decries Low Knowledge of Catholic Doctrines Among Youths

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The Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Umuahia, Most Rev. Michael Ukpong, has charged the Catholic media practitioners to help disseminate the Church doctrines among the youths.

Ukpong gave the charge on Wednesday, when a group, known  as the Catholic Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria (CAMPAN), paid him a courtesy visit in his office at the Mater Dei Cathedral, Umuahia.

He described the knowledge deficit  among the Catholic faithful as worrisome, saying that the phenomenon was more prevalent among the younger generation.

The cleric said that the prevailing delinquencies and societal ills could be attributed to ignorance and the lack of knowledge.

“All these challenges that we are witnessing are as a result of ignorance and the lack of knowledge,” he said.

Ukpong further appealed to the CAMPAN members to enhance their activities, in order that the church would feel their impact more.

“The association can do better to make greater impact in the church.

“You can also help to ensure that the activities of the church go viral in the social media because that is now the global trend,” the clergyman said.

He advised the National President of the group, Mr Chimdi Oluoha, to ensure that he excelled in his assignment in order to bring honour rather than shame to his home diocese.

He promised that the church would do the best within the available reaources to support him to succeed.

Earlier, the Abia Chairman of CAMPAN, Mr Hyacinth Okoli, said the visit was to invite the bishop to the 2024 World Communications Day celebration, scheduled for Sunday.

Okoli, represented by his vice, Mr Chikezie Onyeabor, also formally presented the new National President to the bishop during the visit.

Reports says that Oluoha, who was the immediate past Abia Chairman of the group, was elected at the association’s 2024 Convention held in Isele-Ukwu, Delta State, last week.

In a brief remark, Oluoha promised to discharge the duties of his office diligently and efficiently to take the association and the Church to higher height. (NAN)

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No Rancour over Olubadan Stool – Makinde

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Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has said that there is no rancour over the ascension to the throne of the Olubadan of Ibadanland, as being widely speculated.
Makinde stated this while hosting his deputy, Bayo Lawal, and Muslim faithful within the government who paid him an Eid-el Firtri homage at visited his Ikolaba residence on Wednesday in Ibadan.


The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the nomination of the next Olubadan has been enmeshed in controversy since the death of Oba Lekan Balogun on March 15.

NAN also reports that a meeting of the Obas-in-council, to be presided over by Otun Olubadan of Ibadanland, High Chief Rashidi Ladoja, had been fixed for Thursday, where the nomination of the Olubadan-designate, Oba Owolabi Olakulehin, is expected to be ratified.

The meeting was scheduled few hours after a peace meeting initiated by some Ibadan elders, with Ladoja promising to withdraw the case instituted in court against the elevation of his fellow high chiefs to obaship status.
A new twist to the obaship controversy, however, emerged on Tuesday when the Otun Balogun of Ibadanland, Oba Tajudeen Ajibola, declared that the Olubadan-designate, Olakulehin, was not medically fit to ascend the throne.
The governor, however, warned those whose stock-in-trade was to look at things that will divide the state and its people to look for something else to do.
Rather, he said that they should focus on things that would enhance unity in the state.
Although Makinde said that the Ibadan Obas-in-Council had yet to meet on the nomination of the next Olubadan, he, however, added: “When they eventually make their nomination, they will come to me and I will either say ‘Yes’ or ‘No”.
He also seized the opportunity to call on the people of the state to come out en masse to vote during the local government election, slated for April 27.
The governor assured the residents of the state that the outcome of the council election would reflect their wishes.
He equally urged Muslims to imbibe the lessons of Ramadan in their respective daily activities.
Earlier, the deputy governor, who led the state government’s delegation to the Eid praying ground at Agodi, implored all Muslim faithful to sustain the peaceful and harmonious co-existence being enjoyed in the state.
In his sermon, the Chief Imam of Ibadan land, Sheikh Abubakar Agbotomokekere, enjoined all Muslims to sustain abstinence from all vices, as they did during the Ramadan period.
Agbotomokekere called on the residents of the state to support government with prayers for the growth and development of the state and the country as a whole. (NAN) (www.nannews.ng)

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