The Secretary-General of Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), Prof. Is-haq Oloyede has directed Muslims across the country to be on the lookout for the Council directive on the completion of this year’s Ramadan fast.
Prof. Oloyede, in a statement, said the National Moon Sighting Committee (NMSC) of the Council had advised its President-General, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, that the crescent of Shawwal should be searched for on Monday, 4th July, 2016 equivalent to 29th Ramadan, 1437 AH in preparation for the Idul-Fitri celebrations.
The statement said if the crescent is sighted on Monday night, and if so advised by the experts, His Eminence may declare Tuesday, 5th July, 2016 as the first day of Shawwal, the Eid day.
“If however, the crescent is not sighted on Monday night, Wednesday 6th July, 2016 automatically becomes the first of Shawwal, 1437 AH (Eid day),”, it said.
The council enjoins Muslims to contact established and traditional Islamic leaders in their localities, as well as members of the National Moon Sighting Committee for information and clarification.
“As soon as the Moon Sighting Committee, based on verified information, confirms the sighting of the crescent, the Committee will advise the President-General of the NSCIA, who will announce the completion of Ramadan and the observance of ‘Idul-Fitri prayer.
“While reminding the Ummah of the necessity of paying Zakatul-Fitri with the intention of lifting the hearts of the indigent members of the community, the Council urges all to ensure its delivery to the appropriate recipients (i.e. the poor) and guard against its diversion by any agent or intermediary,” it advised.
The Council also urged Muslim faithful to observe six days of fasting in the proceeding month of Shawwal.