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After election, what next?

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Fr. John Damian (middle) leads other Catholic faithful to pray for Nigeria and peaceful conduct of 2019 elections.


The long awaited presidential election is over. It is like a dream! Since Nigeria gained independence, no election has received the kind of international attention and prayers this election has received. The media described it as the most controversial election. There were tensions here and there. Some people even lost their lives. The peak of it all was the unexpected postponement that took place few hours before the election. As God would have it, Nigerians were able to manage the tension and disappointment. There was no war! The prayers of the children of God were not in vain. God was fully in control!

After my birthday celebration on February 3, 2019, the Lord God gave me an assignment to pray for a peaceful and credible election. Twelve of my members joined me in a daily midnight prayer. As the prayer was going on, I was curious to know who would emerge as the President of Nigeria. I must confess that humanly speaking, the name I was given was not what I was expecting. But God has the final say! When God says yes, who are we to say no?

Our God is a God of a second chance. He told me that He does not take glory in the death of a wicked man, but if He gives the wicked man a second chance and He fails to repent, the wicked man will die while his position will be taken over by another man (probably his second). He will then use his second to achieve his goal, which is the liberation and restoration of Nigeria.

The problem we are facing in Nigeria is not only limited to leadership. A tree cannot make a forest! The major problem we are facing in Nigeria is mainly the sycophants (the cabals) that surround our leaders. No matter how good a leader may be, the people that surround him matter a lot. As St. Paul rightly wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:33, “Bad company ruins good morals.” If you want to succeed as a leader, then you must watch out and avoid bad friends. Just as the President said during his inaugural speech, “I Belong To Everybody And I Belong To Nobody.” This sounds so objective! But what actually went wrong?

A good leader must carry everybody along. He must not be tribalistic. He should not use his political power to impose his religion on others. Last Friday, the eve of the election, the president declares through Femi Adesina, the presidential spokesman that “Constitution guarantees freedom of worship for every Nigerian. It is this guarantee that enables all Nigerians to practise their faiths or religions without hindrance.” According to him, the President affirmed his commitment to freedom of religion and worship for all Nigerians, and that under no circumstance will any religion or faith be imposed on any Nigerian. It is dangerous, deceptive and ungodly to play politics with religion.” Exactly! It is not only ungodly to play politics with religion, it also the most inhuman and barbaric behaviour anyone can exhibit.

How I wish the President would apply this principle, there will be no room for ill-feeling. The Christians will no longer be feeling cheated and persecuted. This will go a long way in correcting most of the errors in appointments, which people are beginning to see as one sided. In a country that is made of Christians and Muslims, everybody has to be carried along, irrespective of their religion, tribe and cultural background. The so-called cattle colony should not be turned into Islamic colony. Whatever compensation is given to herdsmen should equally be given to farmers, especially now that the government is encouraging people to go into agriculture. Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria!


In this article:
John Damian
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