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How Grade 12 civil servant emerged 10th Lagos Chief Imam

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How Grade 12 civil servant emerged 10th Lagos Chief Imam

More details have emerged on how a Grade Level 12 Officer in the Lagos State civil service, Sulaiman Oluwatoyin Abou-Nollah, 42, emerged as the 10th Chief Imam of Lagos. He made history as the youngest person and first graduate to occupy that exalted position.

His turbaning came barely three months after the death of the ninth Chief Imam, Alhaji Garuba Akinola Ibrahim, who passed away on September 24 at the age of 79. Weeks after the eighth day Fidau was held for the repose of Ibrahim’s soul, the mosque’s executive council commenced the process for the appointment of a new Chief Imam.

In line with the extant rotation system between the two constitutionally recognized houses, the Nollah family was requested to submit a nominee to fill the vacant position. It was learnt that a name was earlier submitted by the family but the Spiritual Council in its report said the nominee did not meet the standards expected of an occupant of that sensitive office.

A social media broadcast was recently circulated to the effect that a new Chief Imam has been appointed. But the mosque swiftly dismissed the report, saying the process was still ongoing. It was believed that the name circulated was the initial candidate submitted that was rejected by the spiritual council headed by Sheikh Tijani Gbajabiamila.

In a letter dated December 6, the family however sent another name to the mosque’s committee which was screened on December 9. At the end of the screening attended by 17 of the 18-member council, the new Chief Imam was found worthy to be appointed having been adjudged knowledgeable in Holy Quran and Hadith.

“A Chief Imam is expected to be very vast in the Holy Quran and Hadith. He is a symbol of Sharia (Islamic jurisprudence) and must be above board. All these attributes were found in the new Chief Imam,” said the acting Secretary of the mosque, Mr. Yahata Abimbola in a chat with our correspondent.

The new Chief Imam, from the Oko Awo based, Nollah Chief Imamship Family of Lagos, whose mother is a descendant of Oba Eshilokun is a graduate of Electrical Electronics Engineering from the University of Ilorin. He is presently a Principal Electrical Engineer on Grade Level 12 Officer, of the Lagos State Civil Service.

He attended Daru-Dawat Wal- Irishad, an Islamic Institute, based in Isolo, Lagos where he obtained his Idadiyah (Primary) and Thannawiyah (Secondary) certificates in Arabic and Islamic studies between 2000-2006.

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