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Sermon: Dreams Die: Build a Legacy

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By Babatunde Jose

“O Prophet! Truly We have sent thee as a Witness, a Bearer of Glad Tidings,

and a Warner, And as one who invites to Allah’s (Grace) by His leave, and as a Lamp spreading Light. (Quran 33:45-46)

In this verse of the Quran, Allah summarizes the legacy of Prophet Muhammad as the harbinger of good tidings, the warner, the summoner unto Allah, and as the lamp spreading light in a world that was plunged in darkness; a man who delivered a message to humanity that enlightened every aspect of human life, carrying with it solutions to every problem that humanity would ever face – political, economic, social, judicial, moral and spiritual – for all times, places and people, to take mankind from the darkness and oppression of man-made ways of life and systems to the light and justice of the System from the Lord of the Worlds.

There are many great characters in history, but none of their legacies impacted the world nor shaped the politics and lives of nations to the extent that the life and legacy of Prophet Muhammad. Indeed he was the most influential man in history, as agreed by many historians and writers, including Michael H. Hart, the American author, who ranked Muhammad as number 1 in his book, “The 100 Most Influential Persons in History”, writing, “Of humble origins, Muhammad founded and promulgated one of the world’s great religions and became an immensely effective political leader. Today, thirteen centuries after his death, his influence is still powerful and pervasive.”

First, is the unparalleled political system he pioneered and left behind through the Revelation of Allah – a system that was emulated by the Muslims following his death – and continued for 1300 years – right from the Khilafah Rashidun of Abu Bakr, Umar bin Al Khattab, Uthman bin Affan, and Ali ibn Abu Talib, through the Umayyad, Abbasid, and Uthmani Khilafah until the destruction of this magnificent state at the hands of the western colonialists and their agents in 1924.

It was a political system that was the embodiment of guardianship and care of the people and whose distinctive qualities were justice and accountability in governance as acknowledged by Muslims and non-Muslims alike. A system fashioned upon the words of Allah in Surah an-Nisa: “O ye who believe! Stand out firmly for justice, as witnesses to Allah, even as against yourselves, or your parents, or your kin, and whether it be (against) rich or poor: For Allah can best protect both. Follow not the lusts (of your hearts), lest ye swerve, and if ye distort (justice) or decline to do justice, verily Allah is well acquainted with all that ye do.” (Quran 4:135)

Apart from leaving a legacy of a sound political system based on justice, fairness and equity, the Prophet also left a legacy of good leadership. The Caliber of Leaders the Prophet left behind can be gleaned from the life of the Khalifs: Leaders who truly understood their heavy duty to be the guardians and servants of their people, caring for their every need.  The prophet said: “Each of you is a guardian and each of you is questioned over his subjects, the Imam is responsible over the people and he is questioned over his responsibility.”

Leaders such as Khalifah Umar bin Al Khattab who during the famine in Medina refused to eat anything but coarse food. His health began to deteriorate and he was advised to take care of himself, but he replied, “If I don’t taste suffering, how can I know the suffering of others?”  This was a ruler who would patrol the streets at night to ensure every single one of his citizens had their needs met and was cared for.

He left behind a legacy of leaders who would use their own wealth to make their people rich even if they died poor – like Khalifah Umar bin Abdul Aziz. Before he became a ruler he was a rich man; in fact it took 100 camels to bring his possessions to the city. But he died with only one shirt to his name despite the Khalifah enjoying economic prosperity at the time, because he had spent his wealth for the sake of his Ummah. This was a man who refused to use even a drop of public oil to fuel his lamp for his personal affairs or even use water heated with the state charcoal for his ablution due to his immense sense of accountability over state funds. Subhanallah!

Can we say these about our leaders? Do they even understand what it means to leave a legacy of service?

A leader’s legacy is established by leaving something of enduring quality behind for the organization and its people. Effective leadership occurs when the leader strengthens others’ capacity to learn, to reflect and to extract meaning from their learning.

In essence, “legacy” is what you leave behind when you’re gone. It’s that “thing” that you did either for better or worse, and it’s most often the “thing” for which you are most remembered.

Integrity is perhaps the most important principle of leadership because it demands truthfulness and honesty. … Integrity means telling the truth even if the truth is ugly. Better to be honest than to delude others, because then you are probably deluding yourself, too. Do our leaders pass this benchmark?

Legacy is fundamental to what it is to be human. Research shows that without a sense of working to create a legacy, adults lose meaning in their life. … Being reminded of death is actually a good thing, because death informs life. It gives you a perspective on what’s important.

Let us live to leave a lasting legacy. May Allah guide us a right. It is understandable then why, George Bernard Shaw, the famous British writer and political activist once stated, “I have studied Muhammad – the wonderful man – and in my opinion far from being an anti-Christ, he must be called the Saviour of Humanity. I believe that if a man like him were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world, he would succeed in solving its problems in a way that would bring it the much needed peace and happiness: I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammad that it would be acceptable to the Europe of tomorrow as it is beginning to be acceptable to the Europe of today.”

Barka Juma’at and Ramadan Kareem

 +2348033110822

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CP Alabi Confirms Lagos on Lockdown over Security Threats

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The Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, Abiodun Alabi, on Wednesday said that there was a partial lockdown of the state by security agencies due to the threats of attacks by unknown gunmen.

Alabi disclosed this in Lagos during the Lagos State Stakeholders’ Forum on Police Accountability quarterly meeting and awards.

Alabi gave a keynote address on ‘Police Community Partnership: Panacea for Effective Police Performance’ at the event supported by Open Society Initiative for West Africa.

Alabi said that the partial lockdown was for a purpose, stressing that the police and other security agencies in Lagos were ready for any intruders.

He said that there were stop-and-search points at different places that had become part of the security architectures in the state to combat any likely intruder.

The Lagos police boss who said that though the number of police personnel in the state were inadequate, added that with community/police partnership, the current number could tackle all crimes and criminality.

Alabi said that the force was committed to accountability, where those with excellent performances would always be rewarded amongst the personnel, and sanctions would be meted out to erring and unprofessional ones.

He noted that all the statutory duties of the police were about the protection of lives and properties.

He called on the various community stakeholders: traditional rulers, community leaders, religious leaders, and transporters to always engage the police in their areas for better policing.

The CP urged communities not to be afraid of giving information about crimes and criminality in their areas to the police and other security agencies.

He also implored them to always be interested in the activities of the police and see the police as their family members and not mere friends.

Earlier, the Coordinator of SFPA, Mr Okechukwu Nwanguma, said that the forum was established in 2018 as an outcome of CSOs and other stakeholders’ engagement with police command in Lagos on issues of police accountability.

Nwanguma, who is also the Executive Director of Rule of Law and Accountability Advocacy Centre, said the forum had been and would continue to offer formalised and structured engagement with the various complaints and disciplinary units in the society.

He added that it would also stand as the liaison between the police and communities in Lagos state.

“Accountability is not an easily acceptable issue in the NPF. This is why we are happy that the current police leadership under I-GP Usman Baba has embraced and priotised accountability as an essential means of rooting out corruption and abuse in the force,” he said.

Nwanguma commended the Inspector General of Police for punishing those involved in various unprofessional conducts in the past, stressing that this action was an indication that the IGP was ready to combat corrupt practices and unprofessional conducts.

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Navy Personnel Accused of Sodomy Dismissed

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A Nigerian Navy personnel, SLT VN Ukpawanne, has been dismissed for allegedly committing sodomy with a teenager (name withheld).

Ukpawanne was arraigned before a court-martial set up by the Nigerian Navy in Delta state on four counts.

He was said to have been found guilty of disobeying standing order, attempting to commit sodomy; disgraceful conduct and wrong use of drugs.

The offences were said to be punishable under sections 57, 95; 93; 65 (1) of the AFA CAP A20 LFN 2004.

In a memo sighted by our correspondent on Tuesday, the officer was awarded one-year loss of seniority, six months imprisonment, another six months imprisonment and lastly one-year imprisonment for all four offences.

The memo with Reference: NHQ: 08/68/93/A/Vol.XVIII/399 was titled, ‘Confirmation of court martial punishment -SLT VN Ukpawanne NN/4440’.

It read, “Sequel to Reference A regarding NHQ approval and Confirmation of Court Martial Punishment for the officer named above who attempted to commit Sodomy amidst other offences on 27 Oct 21 with one teenager, (name withheld), close to Sapele Stadium, On 15 Aug 22 at about 1035, the officer was officially paraded and his sentences were read accordingly.

The charges against the officer include the following:

2004: Disobedience to Standing Order – punishable under section 57 of the AFA CAP A20 LFN 2004.

2004: Attempt to Commit Sodomy – punishable under section 95 of the AFA CAP A20 LFN 2004.

2004: Disgraceful Conduct – punishable under section 93 of the AFA CAP A20 LFN 2004.

2004: Wrongful use of drug/Controlled Substance – punishable under section 65 (1) of the AFA CAP A20 LFN 2004.

Accordingly, the officer in violation of all sections listed above was awarded one-year loss of seniority, six months imprisonment, another six months imprisonment and lastly one-year imprisonment for all four offences.

Pertinently, all imprisonment sentences are to run concurrently.

“The dismissed officer is currently awaiting medical clearance from the Naval Medical Centre before handing over to Sapele Correctional Center for commencement of imprisonment term.”

The Punch

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First Set of Winners Emerge in Union Bank’s Save & Win Palli Promo 2 

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Leading financial institution Union Bank of Nigeria has rewarded the first set of winners in the second edition of its Save & Win Palli promo. 

The first live draw of this season, which took place at Union Bank’s Head office in Lagos, saw 50 customers win cash prizes of ₦105,000 each. The winners were selected randomly through a transparent, and electronically generated draw supervised by relevant regulatory bodies.

Save & Win Palli Promo is a nationwide campaign aimed at rewarding customers with cash prices and other exciting gifts worth over N55,000,000. The goal is to encourage and promote a healthy savings culture. The promo is open to new and existing customers who save a minimum amount of N10,000 monthly.

Savers who qualify to participate in the monthly draws stand a chance to win N105,000 each, while 5 winners will go home with N500,000 each in two of the quarterly draws. One lucky customer will snag the star price of N5,000,000 during the grand finale set to hold in December alongside other consolation prices.

Speaking concerning the draw, the Head of Retail Deposits at Union Bank, John Obichie, said: “Union Bank is pleased to reward our customers through initiatives like this that encourage them to save. This promo was introduced to support our customers during these trying times and to reward them for being consistent with their saving habits.

The savings promo which kicked off in July will run until the end of the year and will see more winners emerge during the monthly, quarterly and end-of-year draws so there’s still a chance to participate and win!

If you are an existing Union Bank customer you can continue to top up your savings in multiples of N10,000 monthly to increase your chances of winning.

Prospective customers can download the UnionMobile app on their mobile phones to open an account or they can simply walk into any Union Bank branch. To reactivate existing accounts, returning customers can call the 24-hour Contact Centre on 07007007000 or also visit any of Union Bank’s branches across the country.

For more updates on the Save & Win Palli promo, follow Union Bank on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

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