From Olanrewaju Lawal, Ilorin
The Grand Khadi of the Kwara state Sharia Court of Appeal, Justice S. O. Muhammad, has charged students of Islamic Studies at the University of Ilorin to protect their dignity by empowering themselves economically through the acquisition of vocational skills.
Justice Muhammad gave this advice while delivering a lecture, entitled: “Poverty: its Causes and Effects in Islam”, at the valedictory session of the 2014/2015 class in the Islamic Studies unit of the Department of Religions.
The Grand Khadi, who is an alumnus of the Department of Religions, University of Ilorin, noted that everyone cannot get a white-collar job and advised the prospective graduates to be self-employed like some of the Prophets of God.
Justice Muhammad pointed out that the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. Abdul Ganiyu Ambali, takes after Prophet Musa in animal care, saying that nothing stops the graduating students from taking a cue from him by rearing animals.
While laying emphasis on the need to avoid poverty, the jurist quoted the Prophet, who said that “extreme poverty makes a person lie and compels him to renege on his promises”.
He added that “poverty makes an otherwise wise individual to be enslaved to an idiot and a wise person would not be able to distinguish right from wrong out of want”.
In his own comments, a former Dean of Arts, Prof. Z. I. Oseni, said one of the major causes of poverty in Nigeria is poverty of ideas and expensive lifestyles.
According to him, students are not supposed to be using such phones as BlackBerry, or young civil servants wanting to ride Sport Utility Vehicles.
The Head of the Department of Religion, Prof. (Mrs.) Oyeronke Olademo, in her contribution, noted that “to be in the University is not a right but a privilege and that for every space that a student occupies in the University of Ilorin, there are at least five people who are equally or more qualified”.
Olademo advised the students to bear in mind that the university is a phase in their journey of life and make the best of the phase by using it responsibly.