Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, has described the accomplishments of his administration since inception as basically the rights of citizens of Ondo State from the government responsive to their yearnings.
While calling on other ethnic groups in the country to emulate the Yoruba way of handling religious tolerance, Arakunrin Akeredolu observed that both Christians and Muslims usually co-exist peacefully in a neighborhood and promised equal treatment for all religious bodies across the state.
The governor also referred to how Christians in Ethiopia had saved Muslims during crisis in that country and called for the extension of such religious tolerance to move Nigeria forward.
In his sermon, the Grand Mufti of Ondo State, Alhaji Sirajudeen Shehu Batuta, who described Islam as a religion of peace, enjoined Nigerians to always remember Allah in all their undertakings.
The Cleric also admonished Nigerians to always remember death which could occur when least expected and as such, should indulge in attitudes that will glorify and bring honour unto Allah.
Alhaji Batuta further advised that faithfuls should forget favours done to others as only God rewards goodness adding that they should learn to forget evils done to them by anyone by imbibing the spirit of forgiveness.
In his goodwill message on the occasion, the Chief Imam of Akure, Alhaji Abdul-Hakeem Yayi-Akorede described the Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, as a visionary leader who has extended dividends of democracy to the Muslim community despite not having a Muslim as his Deputy.
He particularly commended the governor for renovating the Akure Muslim Schools even without writing any formal letter to that effect.
“During previous administrations, we wrote series of letters, appealing for the reconstruction and renovations of the dilapidated structures of our schools, but nothing was done.
“Coming in under the Christian-Christian ticket with your Deputy, Hon Agboola Ajayi, we thought all hope was lost for us in the state, but surprisingly, you proved us wrong by attending to our requests and needs.
“We never believed your administration will perform this well. We are part of those who thought we would fold our arms and see what happens in the next four years since.
“Sir, we gave up, since we are not favoured to have a Muslim Governor or a Muslim Deputy Governor.
“Your achievements within one year in office has shown that that you are a visionary leader. You never stopped amazing us despite both of you being Christians. We are solidly behind you.
“I must confess to you sir, that you have really surpassed our expectations”, he stated.
Alhaji Yayi-Akorede further lauded the administration of Arakunrin Akeredolu for the renovation and reconstruction of dilapidated schools which included perimeter fencing, erection of boreholes and electricity powered by solar energy across the state.
He also applauded the governor for his all-inclusive governance and leadership style which according to the Cleric informed the appointment of numerous Muslims into his cabinet.
He mentioned some of them to include: the past Commissionas for Health, Dr Wahab Adegbenro, his counterpart for Works, Rt Hon Taofeek Abdusalam and the Special Adviser to the Governor on Infrastructure, Engineer Raheem Aminu with the Senior Special Assistant, SSA, to the Governor on Security Matters, Alhaji Jimoh Dojumo among others.
He however, assured the governor of the continued support of the Muslim community towards the success of his administration.
The Chairman, League of Imams and Alfas in Ondo State and Secre-General of South West, Edo and Delta States, Alhaji Ahamad Aladesawe, Chief Imams of Ondo, Alhaji Bashir Alimi, his counterpart from Ifira-Akoko, Alhaji Sulaiman Sasere among other Islamic scholars offered prayers for Nigeria and her leaders to overcome various challenges confronting the country.
Dignitaries at the programme include: the Speaker, Ondo State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Bamidele Oleyeloogun; Chairman of All Progressives Congress, APC, Engineer, Ade Adetimehin,; Secretary to Ondo State Government, Hon Ifedayo Abegunde; Chief of Staff to the Governor, Chief Olugbenga Ale; Head of Service, Oluwatoyin Akinkuotu,; Commissioner for Works, Rt Hon Taofeek Abdusalam and Commissioner for Finance, Mr Wale Akinterinwa.
Others are the Olugbo of Ugbo, Oba Frederick Akinruntan; Olubaka of Oka-Akoko, Oba Yusuf Adebori Adeleye former Ondo State Deputy Governor, Alhaji Lasisi Oluboyo; Member House of Representatives, Hon Mayowa Akinfolarin and various Muslim groups and societies across the state.
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