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Eid-el-Kabir 'FG not Sultan of Sokoto should declare public holiday,' says Christian groups

All isn't well for a coalition of Christian groups, who are warning the FG to stop Sultan of Sokoto from announcing public holidays for Muslim celebrations.

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A coalition of several Christian groups in Nigeria have queried the alleged declaration of public holidays to celebrate Islamic celebration by the Sultan of Sokoto and President-General of Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III.

The coalition led by National Christian Elders Forum (NCEF), ThisDay Newspaper reports, condemned the federal government  over the declaration of September 12, 2016 as public holiday in commemoration of Eid-el-Kabir celebration by Abubakar III.

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President Buhari

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Speaking on behalf of the NCEF, Solomon Asemota (SAN), said it was “very improper for the head of the Islamic faith in Nigeria to announce, declare or extend public holidays. stating that it smacks of usurpation of government functions."

ALSO READ: Sultan announces September 12 as Eid el-Kabir Day

Speaking further, Asemota said: “We call on the federal government to rise to its task and cease abdicating its responsibilities to the head of a religion. We do not want what happened during the time of Abacha, when Sultan Dasuki was dethroned by Abacha to repeat itself. It should not be forgotten that apart from Christianity and Islam, there exist in Nigeria various traditional religions that are the foundation of our culture as Africans.

“The federal government should continue to play its neutral, non-aligned role in the best interest of the nation. Meanwhile, we await the declaration of the Eid el-Kabir public holiday by the  Federal Republic of Nigeria,” the coalition stated.

Other members of the coalition include Nigerian Christian Graduate Fellowship; Think Tank For The Body Of Christ; Christian Lawyers Fellowship of Nigeria; Association of Christian Schools in Nigeria; Students Christian Movement; Christian Professionals Forum; Ministers Prayer Network; International Christian Embassy Jerusalem; Nigeria Evangelical Missions Association and International Prophetic Ministerial Association (Inc. Worldwide College of Bishops and Ministers, Africa, UK and USA).

This condemnation is coming barely two months after a similar incident in which the non-sighting of the moon by Sultan saw the FG extending the public holiday.

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