The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) on Wednesday congratulated Sa‘ad Abubakar III, the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, as he turned 64.
The group’s Director, Prof. Ishaq Akintola, in a statement, described the Sultan as “uncommon and totally detribalised.
“We join millions of Nigerians to celebrate a unique leader, as he turns 64.
“He (Sultan) accommodates all, regardless of ethnicity or creed. He thinks more of the whole country than of Sokoto Sultanate. Instead of leading sedentary existence or exhibiting armchair leadership, the Sultan has been highly mobile.
“More fascinating is the manner he closed the gap between the adherents of Christianity and Islam.
“His level of religious tolerance is nulli secundus. His cool-headedness in the face of provocation is legend.
“Sultan Abubakar’s sense of humour is numero uno. He can collect candy from a hungry lion. Yet, behind the calm façade is a tactician and a fearless strategist primus inter pareil.
“We therefore charge Nigerian Muslims to unite, remain loyal to the central leadership and to shun ethnicity.”
He reminded Muslims in the Southern part of the country that Muslims are one nation and recognised no geographical boundaries.
He added that “there is no difference between a Northern and a Southern Muslim. The Glorious Qur’an says ‘Verily indeed this brotherhood of yours is a single brotherhood and I am your Lord.
“Therefore, worship Me (Qur’an 21:92). Southern Muslims should also note that the hadith forbids al-Jannah for any Muslim who dies while promoting ethnicity above the religion of Islam.”
He prayed to Almighty Allah to grant the sultan long life, good health, peace, tranquility and progress.
Born on Aug. 24, 1956, Sultan Muhammadu Sa’ad Abubakar III is the 20th Sultan of Sokoto.
As Sultan of Sokoto, he is considered the spiritual leader of Nigerian Muslims.