By Emeka Mamah and Chinenyeh Ozor
The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar III, has said that education was key to development, adding that it would continue to remain the veritable tool for national and human development as it promotes unity, peace and economic development of the country.
Abubakar spoke while delivering a lecture entitled, “Restoring the dignity of Man,” during the celebration of the 57th Founders’ Day of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, UNN, yesterday.
The Sultan spoke as the Catholic Bishop of Nsukka Diocese, Most Rev. Godfrey Igwebuike Onah, expressed dismay over what he described as the continued practice of harmful cultures like Osu or Ohu (slavery) in Igbo land in the name of preservation of culture.
Among the personalities present on the occasion included the Obi of Onitsha, His Royal Majesty, Igwe Nnanyelugo Alfred Nnaemeka Achebe; Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar 111, Pro-chancellor of UNN, Chief Michael Olorunfemi, wife of the former President of Nigeria, Prof (Mrs) Uche Nnamdi Azikiwe, former Secretary General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nduka Eya; Prof. B.I.C. Ijeoma, Prof Kenneth Ofokansi and Igwe George F.O. Asadu among others.
Onah, who is the chairman, Governing Council, Enugu State University of Science and Technology, ESUT, also, spoke while delivering a paper to mark the 57th Founders’ Day celebration of the UNN.
However, Sultan Abubakar said no human development would be achieved without education from where knowledge and skills were acquired for the national and human development of any country.
His words, “Countries that take education serious tend to develop healthier and happier. Education is light and aims at restoring the dignity of man while ignorance is darkness and leads to poverty.
“Education will continue to be a veritable tool for human- capital development.”
The sultan further said that educated people in any society “drive the economic and political system of development which is key to restoring and safeguarding the dignity of man…,” adding that any part or group that killed in the name of Islam were not a true Muslims as according to him, Islam as religion was against taking one’s life as we cannot restore the dignity of man by killing innocent people in the name of fake religion. .
“The herdsmen killing people are criminals and not Fulani herdsmen.
“Anybody that kills people shouting Allah is a terrorist and not a true Muslim and will go to hell, Allah hates people who kill and said they will go to hell,” he said.
In his remarks, the Enugu State governor Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi applauded UNN’s contributions to national development as well as for restoring the dignity of man in the 57 years of its establishment.
Ugwuanyi said UNN made excellent choice by choosing the Sultan as one of the guest speakers.
“We appreciate the Sultan coming to deliver this important lecture, that shows the volume of love he has for UNN as well as Enugu State.
“All hands must be on deck in sustaining the founding fathers dreams in restoring the dignity of man, “ he said.
Also, the governor of Delta state Chief Ifeanyi Okowa who was
Conferred with the “dignity of man award” said he was humbled by the university for finding him worthy of the award.
Okowa said he would come back to UNN to put up a physical structure in appreciation of the award.
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