Muslim lawyers‘ll foster peaceful coexistence among different religious, ethnic groups – President

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By Suleiman Shehu

Mr Saidu Muhammad, the newly-elected President of Muslim Lawyers’ Association of Nigeria (MULAN), says the association will foster peaceful coexistence among different religious and ethnic groups in Nigeria.

He stated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Ibadan.

NAN reports that Muhammad emerged the new MULAN president at the association’s 15th Annual General Conference held between Friday and Saturday in Ibadan.

He said that the association would strive to identify areas of potential conflicts and nip them in the bud in order to promote peaceful coexistence in the country.

Muhammad also said that the association would reach out to other groups such as Christian Lawyers’ Association of Nigeria, to promote inter-faith harmony and understanding.

According to him, under no circumstance should any misunderstanding among Muslims, Christians and people from other religions degenerate into violence or conflict in Nigeria.

“I intend to reinvent MULAN and take it to a higher level of relevance in state, regional and national affairs.

“We will partner with students, youths and women to interface with governments at all levels in order to address their problems and concerns,” he said.

Muhammad further stated that the association would be much more than just a pressure group of like-minded peers

“It will become a vibrant voice for re-awakening public consciousness, dialogue and action,” he said.

The association’s goal, according to him, is to work for the common good of all Nigerians and the Islamic religion.

He said that the association would also strive to eradicate ignorance, suspicion and distrust among Muslims through an active campaign and public engagements.

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“We must be recognised as a force for the good of all, national integration, ethnic cohesion and, above all, religious tolerance and understanding,” he said.

Muhammad said that the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, being a MULAN member, is on an important seat which the association could leverage to achieve its objectives and plans for Nigeria and Nigerians.

He pledged the association’s support to Fagbemi to enhance his success in his position through concrete steps such as initiating and endorsing executive bills for passage into law, among others.

The MULAN president noted that the country was currently facing challenges in the areas of employment, education, culture and politics.

He, therefore, urged Nigerians to work together to address the challenges in the interest of peace, progress and development of the country.

He called on the government to provide an enabling environment for businesses to thrive and give youths a sense of belonging.

“Government must also cut down the cost of governance, which is one of the highest in the world, and ensure that leaders are not allowed to become looters,” he added.

He promised to ensure protection of the interests of Muslims in the country, be it legal or otherwise.

“I will encourage recognition, respect and integration of Islamic principles and practices in legal proceedings and statutes at all levels of government,” he said.

NAN reports that Muhammad, who was born on April 17, 1969, is a 1994 graduate of Bayero University, Kano (BUK).

He holds a Masters degree in Law from the same university, specialising in Company and Labour Relations Law.

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He had, at various times, acted as an advocate, solicitor and arbitrator, with considerable experience, both locally and internationally, in dispute resolution and complex transactions.

The new MULAN president, currently the managing partner of the law firm of S.D. Muhd & Co., is a member of many professional bodies, including International Bar Association, African Bar Association and the Nigerian Bar Association. (NAN)

Edited by ‘Wale Sadeeq

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