2019 Election: Group Urges Religious Leaders to Ensure Peace

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Segun James

A non-governmental-organisation, the Legacy Initiative International (LII), has called on religious leaders to play more roles at esuring that peace reigns during the 2019 general election.
To this effect, religious leaders across the country will hold a conference in December to deliberate on issues relating to religion and ethnicity ahead.

As part of this move, Christian religious leaders meeting will hold within the next few weeks in Lagos while that of the Muslim faith will hold in Kano with the joint meeting of both faiths holding in Abuja in December.

This was disclosed in Lagos saturday by the leader and grand patron of the Legacy Initiative International, Dr. Kenny Martins.

He said the initiative was part of the move to ensure that anarchy did not reign in the country as the nation moves towards the general election, adding that religion had been identified as a solution for peace in the country.
He said: “We want Christian and Muslim brothers to sit face to face and discuss the issues. The common thread tying both the Christian and the Muslim communities together is good governance. We want them to discuss this frankly between themselves.”

He also said that religious leaders should play a more dynamic role in the selection of political office holders, saying that the spiritual factor was necessary to aid the Nigerian voters enthrone good governance by electing only persons that have been duly vetted into political offices.

Also at the briefing were other patrons of the group including Bishop Bayo Babalola, Bishop Oscar Ossai, Prince Chudi Chukwuani and the group’s national secretary, Chief Johnny Ucheagha.

Martins also explained the roles played by the group in stabilising the country’s democracy.
He however, lamented that the group’s efforts had been seemingly frustrated by the enthronement of leaders without capacity to drive the country, saying that despite the abundance of churches and mosques in the country, the God factor had been totally removed from governance.

“Let the Christian and Muslim leaders sit together formulate a template for solution and play the power game together, interrogate the candidates and when you have found them worthy you preach about them from the pulpit and from the mosques.
“We are canvassing now for PVCs and people are getting aware, the Adeboyes, the Oyedepos are doing so, but when they have gotten these PVCs, what do they do with it? It is inappropriate for Christians not to bring their first eleven in moral quotient to governance, same with Muslims.
“Let the first eleven from the religious leaders take over the government so that our country can move forward,” Martins said.

Also speaking yesterday, Prince Chukwuani, former national chairman of the National Democratic Party (NDP), noted that “There is a common thread tying Christian and Muslim leaders in the country and that is good governance. We are about to go on the second lap of the meeting of all Christian leaders in Lagos, meeting of all Muslim leaders in Kano/Kaduna and this will be followed by a convergence of the two for peace.

“We have to set a different narrative to save Nigeria. We do not want to introduce perpetual conflict in Nigeria. They are going to pick their candidates but all we are saying is that let the PVCs count for once.”