Associate Professor, in the Department of Foreign Languages, Lagos State University, LASU, Saheed Timehin has advocated Islamic cooperative system for Imams and Alfas in order to meet their economic needs.

Dr Timehin said the system which is operative in Indonesia if incorporated, would help in making Imams and Alfas remain focused on the spiritual development of their followers and stay within the confines of their spiritual obligations.

Also, another scholar in the department of Islamic studies, University of Lagos, UNILAG, Dr Basheer AbdulRaheem urged Nigerians to be patient with President Tinubu in his efforts to fix Nigeria’s economy, adding that things had gone from bad to worse and will require only a drastic approach.

The scholars stated this during their presentations at the one-day conference for Imam and Alfas organised by Eti-Osa council of Imams and Alfas held at the Islamic Center, Oba Ojomu drive, Ajah, Lagos, recently.

Delivering a lecture on “Incentives for Mosque’s Custodian”, Dr Timehin stated that imam occupy sensitive positions in the society and that they should not be allowed to derail from those important roles naturally assigned to them. He added that stipends and salaries are not enough for Imams, other legitimate means of livelihood should be made available to them.

According to Timehin, some Imams and Alfas indulge in shirk, diabolical acts, cultism among other unholy acts in order to meet their financial obligations, adding Imams should seek a legitimate source of income, and not rely on stipends from mosque’s committee and offerings at Islamic functions.

He added that imam should do appraisal of himself, know his weakness and guide against it at all times.

Speaking on the topic, “Images of Imam Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow”, Dr Basheer AbdulRaheem stated that Imam can only become a role model and good representative of Prophet Muhammad if he jettissones the prestige and money that come with it.

Dr AbdulRaheem said an ideal Imam must be trustworthy, pious, patient, humble, sound aqeedah among others.

“An Imam should be a representative of Prophet Muhammad. (s.a.w) They are supposed to be a role model, but unfortunately, there are those who do not adhere to the teachings and practice of Prophet Muhammad. Those who are devinely called are the true representatives of the Prophet while those who called thmeselves, doing all sorts of things are those you see doing evils. We can’t rule out having some people as Alfas and Imams but working against the principle of Islam.

Feilding question on the current economic hardship in the country, he urged Nigerians to be patient with President Tinubu, adding that the route taken by the president though tough but will usher in better days in the nearest future.

“I really empathise with the present government considering how bad our economic situation is. We just have to keep praying for the President. It was common knowledge that things had gone from bad to worse; and needed a drastic approach. He has to take this route, we just have to be patient and keep praying for him to take us out of the woods. It is difficult though, but we have to go through this to enjoy it later,” he said

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