The Media Office of Sultan Saad Abubakar has debunked social media report which claimed that the Sultan had made a u-turn on his declaration of Thursday 13th May, 2021 as 1st Shawwal, 1442AH.
Sultan Abubakar, in a statement by the Chairman, Advisory Committee on Religious Affairs, Sultanate Council, Prof. Sambo Junaidu on Tuesday, 11 May, 2021 approved the report of no-moon sighting and that of the National Moon Sighting Committee (NMSC) and declared Thursday, 13 May, 2021 as 1st Shawwal 1442AH.
“His Eminence Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, CFR, mni, the Sultan of Sokoto and President General, Nigeria Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) has accepted the report and accordingly declared Thursday, 13th May 2021, as the first day of Shawwal 1442AH (Day of Idul-Fitri),” the statement reads.
However, a certain Fityanu Media posted on the Facebook page of Tijjaniya Online that the Sultan had made a u-turn on his declaration of Thursday 13th May, 2021 as 1st Shawwal, 1442AH and Eid-el-Fitri celebration.
In its response, the Media Office of the Sultan in a statement by Prince Bashir Adefaka, released on Wednesday, 12 May, 2021 described the Facebook post as fake news.
The statement reads:
“The attention of Media Office of the Sultan of Sokoto and Sariki Musulumi of Nigeria, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, CFR, mni, has been drawn to a very misleading post on Tijjaniya Online Facebook page called, which claimed that the Sultan had made a u-turn on his declaration of Thursday 13th May, 2021 as 1st Shawwal, 1442AH and Eid-ul-Fitri celebration.
“The post, written in 6Hausa Language and credited to one “Fityanu Media”, purportedly claimed that, “The Sultan has made u-turn on his broadcast of Shawwal after our leader, Maolana Sheikh Dahiru Usman Bauchi authenticated Shawwal moon sighting,” thereby calling Muslims in the country, against the constituted authority of the Sultan, to go to Eid and celebrate Sallah on Wednesday.
“We wish to make it emphatically clear to the over 100 million Muslims of Nigeria that His Eminence Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, as a man of principle, self respect and very highly and sincerely committed to leading the Muslim Ummah of Nigeria aright, in his 15 years on the throne and as Leader of the Ummah, has never used one word to mean two. Once he declares his moonsighting it stands.
“Moreso, it is pertinent for the concerned members of the public to note that the Sultan is not a ‘Mr. Know All Acting Alone’. Everything he does in moonsighting is based on consultations even after profound and meticulous facts-checking. He has a very formidable Moon Sighting System that is second to none anywhere around, based on the dictates of the Qur’an and Hadeeth of the Prophet peace be upon him..
“The average Muslims in the village and at the grassroots sight the moon. He has never himself sighted one but has a very well articulated system that carries out integrity checks on moon sighting information gathered from across the states and, based on consultations with and advise of National Moon Sighting Committee (NMSC), the Religious Affairs Committee of the Sultanate Council as well as the various committees consisting of members from, not only Northerners but also, across other tribes, made his sincere broadcast directing the Muslims to either commence or end fasting at respective times of Ramadan’s new moon sighting and Shawwal’s new moon sighting.
“In his rare nature of responding to such misinformation, the Sultan said, HE DID NOT declare Wednesday as 1st Shawwal 1442AH and Sallah but that, SURELY, HE DECLARED THURSDAY 13TH MAY 2021. He never made a u-turn from that declaration neither has he any intention to do so.
“That I declared Wednesday as Eid after Dahiru Bauchi called me, is fake news and very low and unislamic behavior,” the Sultan said, adding “One is concerned, considering the kind of people, who should cooperate with the the Leader for the unity of Muslims and, by extension, peace, unity and overall development of Nigeria, but resort to using deliberate misinformation to misguide Muslims even in a religious affair as cogent as Ramadan fasting. It is not only unfortunate, it is sad.”