Avoid big Sallah gathering, NSCIA warns Muslims (Read Details)

The Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs on Tuesday told Muslim faithful  to observe all the preventive and precautionary measures specified by the government to combat the COVID-19 pandemic in the country during Eid-ul-fitr celebration.

The NSCIA President-General and Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, earlier in the day  called on Muslims to look out for new moon on Friday, which  signals the end of Ramadan.

In a statement by its Deputy Secretary-General, Prof. Salisu Shehu, the body said Muslims had cause to thank Allah for  the opportunity to observe  the Ramadan despite the coronavirus threat.

However, the group said that; Despite the challenges ravaging the world on account of the coronavirus pandemic, the worst in a century, Muslims still have reasons to thank Allah because every bad situation could be worse. And this is why only those who are thoughtful are grateful and so we are.

“Except in very few and negligible cases, the reports from all over the federation indicate that Muslims conduct themselves obediently and adhere to the regulations of the council regarding the situation of the moment.”

Moreover, the NSCIA aslo added that; It is crucial to reiterate that we are living in unusual times where almost everything normal has become abnormal, including social gatherings and large congregational prayers.

“Therefore, Muslims are enjoined to note that Eid-ul-fitr is not a compulsory religious activity (fard) and at no point should it be observed if doing so will undermine the fundamental purpose of Shari’ah: security, a multifaceted concept which includes personal, community, national, environmental and health components, among others.

“Muslims should therefore act according to the established protocol in their various communities and locations in Nigeria during the forthcoming Eid-ul-fitr.”

The council said congregational prayers  could be observed in  places allowed, but insisted those part of the prayers  must adhere to COVID-19 safety measures  regarding personal hygiene, face masks and social distancing.

It was further added by Shehu that; It is even advisable that in such places, massive gatherings at one Eid ground in a big city should be avoided. Rather the Eid could be performed in area-Mosques to avoid unmanageable crowds. However, in places where the ban on large congregational prayers and socio-religious gatherings is still in force, Muslims are directed to be law-abiding while appreciating that intentions supersede actions and actions are judged on the basis of intentions, as Prophet Muhammad said.”

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