Muslim Media Practitioners of Nigeria (MMPN), Lagos State chapter has asked the Federal Government to declare a public holiday to celebrate the Hijrah New Year.
The New Year, 1439 A.H, commences on Muharram 1st of the lunar calendar, which coincides with Thursday, September 21, 2017.
It should be noted that notable Nigerian states like Sokoto, Kano, Zamfara, Niger and Osun which had previously declared 1st of Muharram as a public holiday to commemorate the Islamic New Year.
Secretary of the group, Ishola Balogun, who congratulated the Muslims on the Hijjrah New Year said: “Muharram is the first month in Islamic Calendar, dates back to 1,439 years ago when Prophet Muhammad (S.A.W) migrated from Makkah to Madinah, an event which marked the turning point in the spread of the message of Islam from the hostile environment of Makkah to flourishing mien of Madinah and from where it reaches the entire world.
“The recognition and declaration of the first day of Muharram would be in line with the principle of fairness and justice to Muslims in Nigeria,” he said.
MMPN also congratulated National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON), Lagos State Pilgrims Welfare Board and all the pilgrims for the successful completion of 2017 hajj operations.
Meanwhile the MMPN commended President Muhamadu Buhari for withdrawing troops deployed to Abia State, Southeast Nigeria, noting that the decision to halt the ‘Operation Python Dance’ ahead of October 15, 2017 is in the interest of peace and unity of the country.
By Adeyinka Aremu, Lagos