Mr Issa Aremu, the Director-General, Michael Imoudu Institute For Labour Studies (MINILS), Ilorin, has urged Nigerians to safeguard the nation’s democracy and pray for a peaceful 2023 general election.
Aremu made the call on Friday during the celebration of the birthday of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) by the institute’s Muslim community.
He stated that the year 2023 is an important year for Nigeria as the nation would mark 24 years of uninterrupted democracy, urging Nigerians to shun tendencies that can bring back military rule.
Aremu said that it was the military that destroyed the country because of its long rulership of the country which he described as an abberation.
He however acknowledged that life is tough in Nigeria just like in some other African countries, adding that democracy has brought stability and development to the country in the last 24 years.
“The 2023 is an important year for Nigeria because we will mark 24 years of uninterrupted democracy.
“Though life is tough in Nigeria like in Ghana, South Africa and other countries, Nigerians should still give thanks to God for keeping the nation as one indivisible entity. Some of its peers have disintegrated. God really bless Nigeria – good weather, etc.
“This is the sixth general elections that Nigeria will be conducting since 1999. It was the military that destroyed Nigeria. Democracy has its follies but it’s far better than military rule. Never should anyone rule us again except through the ballot papers,” he said.
The director-general noted that Nigeria is the largest democracy in Africa, stressing that “we should pray for a peaceful 2023 general elections”.
He stated: “We should do quality control of electioneering campaigns. We should not abuse one and another but we should make our campaign issues-based. Anybody that wins must carry everyone along.
“We must adopt bi-partisanship approach to development. No single person can solve Nigeria’s problems.”
Aremu expressed delight over the modest achievements of MINILS under his watch, saying that the institute will be 40 years old this year.
He hailed President Muhammadu Buhari for ensuring that no single Nigerian lost his job as a result of economic challenges and COVID-19 pandemic.
He also described the setting up of a committee by the Federal Government to review workers salary as highly commendable.
Aremu lauded the minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, for facilitating the construction of the road leading to the institute.
Alhaji Najim Yasin, the Deputy National President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), described the institute as labour friendly.
He explained that workers continue to get their required training with maximum support from the management.
Speaking on the Maulud celebration, Malam Yahaya Muhammad, the Imam of the MINILS Mosque, explained that this is the maiden edition of Maulud from the institute.
Muhammad, who is also the Assistant Director of Finance, MINILS, noted that it is an opportunity for Muslims to gather and pray for themsleves, their families and the nation.
He said it afford different narratives from the time of the Holy Prophet of Islam, which is exemplary for all Muslims.