…say ‘Nigerians should consider merit above religious sentiments’
Christian leaders in the North, on Tuesday, backed the Muslim-Muslim ticket’s decision of the All Progressives Congress’ presidential flagbearer, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
The religious leaders under the aegis of Progressive Christian Clerics, North-West Zone, said Christianity encourages brotherliness, hence their decision to back the Tinubu/Shettima ticket .
The Christian leaders’ group with members across the 19 Northern states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, noted that Nigerians should be more concerned about electing leaders with capacity to tackle security challenges and economic problems militating against the country’s progress rather than issues of religious and ethnic sentiments .
The Christian leaders in a statement by the North-West Zonal Chairman, Reverend Moses Bitrus of Arise and Shine Prophetic Ministry Kaduna, said rather than joining to fight and grudge over Muslim-Muslim ticket, ”we have resolved to pray to God to give us leaders with the wisdom and knowledge to govern Nigeria.”
They noted that “Nigeria is collapsing and needs leaders with proven track record of performance that are adequately equipped to fight the threats by insurgency with all seriousness.We need committed leaders with the capacity to deliver on campaign promises without excuses once elected.
“These among several reasons are why we disagreed with Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and other churches kicking against the issue of Muslim -Muslim Ticket .”
The clerics, however, pointed out that ,”though Nigeria is a cosmopolitan state with a multi-ethnic and religious diversity, it is high time we began to speak about leadership on the basis of merit, competence, experience and record of performance in choice of who leads across all tiers of government. “
Noting that Tinubu governed Lagos for eight years and Shettima did same in Borno for same number of years, the clerics said ”the records of their examplary leadership in the area of religious tolerance, economic development and other indices of development are in the public domain.
“We therefore resolve to stand by our faith that preach love for our neighbours and peaceful coexistence without any fear of intimidation to urge Nigerians to vote on basis of record of performance and not religion.
“Tinubu has been married to a Christian wife for over 40 years and known for his good relationship with Christians across Nigeria . Shettima was singled out as a very receptive Governor ,who gave priority to growth and development of Christian communities in Borno during his days as Governor, so why the outcry ? Religion should not be the basis for electing a President and his running mate.”