Islamic cleric go against sultan’s orders to lead Eid prayers on Tuesday


On Tuesday, Sokoto Muslim cleric Sheikh Musa Lukwa led his congregation in Eid prayer.On Monday, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar, declared Wednesday to be Eid-el-Fitr.


The Sultan, who is the President General of Nigeria’s Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, stated that the decision was made in response to a report from the country’s National Moon Sighting Committees, which verified that the new moon had not been seen.


According to a statement signed by Prof. Sambo Junaidu, Chairman of the Advisory Committee on Religious Affairs to the Sultanate Council, and made available to journalists in Sokoto on Monday evening,


“The council accepted the report and accordingly declared Wednesday, April 10, 2024, as the first day of Shawwal 1445AH.However, Lukwa disregarded the Sultan’s edict against moon viewing when he led prayers at his Juma’at mosque about 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday.


Lukwa justified the move by stating that Shawwal’s moon was visible in the nearby Niger Republic on Monday.

He went on to say, “There were reports of sightings of the new crescent in many places, including here in Nigeria, but the one that we were sure of is that of the Niger Republic.” We have a certified video tape of their council of Ulamah confirming the claim, following which the country recognised Tuesday as Sallah Day.


So, according to the Holy Prophet’s teachings, we must now observe Eid on Tuesday.”If we can accept that of Saudi Arabia, why can’t we agree with that of the Niger Republic, which is nearer to us?” I am not arguing that all Nigerian Muslims must pray on Tuesday, but there is no moral reason for not praying on Tuesday since our neighbours saw the new moon. Remember, there is no fasting on Sallah Day.


It is banned.”Lukwa has been resisting Sultan’s orders, accusing the king of pushing Muslims to embrace Saudi Arabia’s moon sighting, which he claims violates the Holy Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) traditions.

By Nnaemeka Odenigbo

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