Thousands of Muslim faithful in Lagos State and its environs on Tuesday defied the early morning rainfall as they trooped out of their various homes to observe prayers in celebration of Eid-el- Kabir.
Correspondents of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) who went round the city report that both the old and the young thronged the Eid grounds in their respective areas to observe the prayers.
Many Muslim clerics were seen carrying umbrellas of various sizes to protect themselves, while the prayers were going on at the designated praying grounds.
NAN reports from Epe that Sheikh Abdul-Raman Sadalah, the Chief Imam of Epe Central Mosque, led Muslin faithful to pray at the Central Mosque, Oke-Balogun, instead of the open praying ground because of the rain.
Sadalah, in his message, called for love and tolerance among Nigerians, irrespective of religions and tribes.
He said that no nation would prosper and develop without love and tolerance among its people.
The cleric enjoined Muslims to imbibe the spirit of sacrifice in their daily activities as exemplified by Prophet Mohammed.
He decried the spate of maiming and killing of innocent citizens in some parts of the country and called for fervent prayers for divine intervention.
Sadalah urged Muslims not to consider the celebration as an occasion for merry-making only, but that it also called for sober reflection and rededication to the service of God and humanity.
He appealed to wealthy Muslims to extend their hands of fellowship to the less privileged in the society by assisting them with food, drinks and other necessities of life.
Sadalah commended Gov. Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State for curtailing the excesses of political thugs in the state.
He said that the Lagos State Government had been very upright and vigilant in ensuring that the threat by some miscreants posed no security threat to the residents.
“We are, however, calling on the security agents to intensify efforts in ensuring that there is no breach of peace from any quarter in the state,’’ he said.
Sadalah, at the end of the prayer, performed the symbolic slaughtering of a ram to signify the official rite by fellow Muslims to do same.
NAN reports that Oba Shefiu Adewale, Bangbopa Esilokun I, the Olu-Epe of Epe; the Speaker, Lagos State House of Assembly, Mr Sabit Ikuforiji; Mr Wale Mogaji, the chairman, House of Assembly Service Commission, were among those who attended the payer.
Also, at 7th Ave. Mosque, Festac Town, Imam Salis Ishaq, urged Muslims to imbibe the spirit of Eid-el-Kabir and live peacefully with one another.
The Imam, quoting copiously from the Holy Qur’an, urged Muslim faithful to be law abiding and train their children in the ways of God. (NAN)