Religious leaders canvas better approach to secure Nigerians at Xmas
Religious leaders have called on the Federal Government to ensure that Nigerians can move about freely and without any molestation during the yuletide. They also reminded government and politicians that peace could only thrive where there was honesty, justice and fair play. Those who spoke to The Guardian on phone include Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Lagos Chapter, Bishop Stephen Adegbite and Catholic Archbishop Emeritus, John Cardinal Onaiyekan.
Bishop Adegbite entreated the Federal Government to develop a security management framework capable of dealing with insecurity in the land, as well as deploy the armed forces to protect lives and properties of Nigerians. He noted that it is the primary duty of security forces to protect Nigerians, wherever they reside in the country. He also advised the Federal Government to make the cost of living affordable to every Nigerian and create conducive atmosphere for farmers to do their business.
In his Christmas message, the CAN Chairman described the message as that of hope, love, and peace “because the name of Jesus is Immanuel, which means God is with us. And it is that name that brought life and immortality to us through the gospel and because the Bible says the government shall be upon His shoulders.” As election is around the corner, Bishop Adegbite urged politicians to play the game according to the rule and have the fear of God, which is the beginning of wisdom.
Onaiyekan also advised the Federal Government to make conscious effort to ensure that the country is more secure.
Lamenting on the cost of food items, the Archbishop Emeritus linked high cost of living to the country’s economic policies and asked those making the policies to assess the result of their work, and if proper, they should congratulate themselves.
He said: “But if they discover that many Nigerians are hungry, then it calls for special attention. Many people have been reduced to begging not because they are lazy or stupid, but because the nation is badly organised.”
On Nigerian elections, he said: “Lack of transparency in Nigerian elections is part and parcel of lack of transparency and honesty in all aspects of public life. Why are people rigging elections? So, if we decide to change our attitude, especially public life; if we decide to be honest and do things properly, elections will run well. As it is now, people are just killing those who are doing election. We have those who are robbing…without any accountability, it is the same story…but what is special about election? Election is only an aspect of the general life…to do what is right and to give everybody what is their right. If we can agree that doing the right thing is best for us; that honesty is the best policy, then all of us will work hard to make it possible for us to be able to live a better life.”
Cardinal Onaiyekan urged the rich to help the less privileged during Christmas.