By Deji Elumoye in Abuja
Two members of the National Assembly have enjoined Nigerians across religious divide to ensure peace and tolerance during the Yuletide season.
Chairman of the Senate committee on Finance, Senator Olamilekan Adeola, and his Co-operation and Integration on Africa/NEPAD counterpart, Senator Chimaroke Nnamani, in their Christmas messages on Tuesday prayed for peace, nation’s economic growth as well as religious tolerance among the citizenry.
Senator Adeola, in his message, called on Christians in particular and Nigerians in general to use the occasion of the Christmas celebration to renew their faith in Jesus Christ as Saviour of mankind and pray for peace and economic development of Nigeria.
According to him, Christmas symbolizes the celebration of the birth of a new dawn for the salvation of souls for all humanity especially for the Christian believers and should therefore not be used for only merry-making He stressed that this year’s celebration is another opportunity for fervent prayers for a new dawn and prosperous future for individuals and the Nigeria nation.
While acknowledging that Nigerians in general are going through a difficult period for sustained economic growth that is mercifully not compounded by the usual fuel scarcity as witnessed in time past during Yuletide, the Senator urged all Nigerians to be patient and look forward to a better future adding that with abiding faith in Jesus Christ “all our challenges will be a thing of the past as we move to next level of our development”.
On his part, Senator Nnamani called for harmony among religious adherents in order to engender peace and unity in the country.
This, he said, is necessary to have a common approach towards addressing underdevelopment in Nigeria.
He noted that the time calls for unity of purpose towards tackling the issues facing Nigeria saying “we need to be on the same page in order to produce the desired result”.
The former governor of Enugu state noted that Nigeria has had her fair share of ethno-religious conflicts in the past in which the nation lost millions of naira worth of properties and scores of her productive citizens needlessly.
These, Senator Nnamani pointed out, required the attention of religious leaders across the divide to address in order to make progress.
His words: “we must all focus on the positives without degenerating to the level of low minds who cling to primordial fault lines as their road map for survival”.
He maintained that anything that would make for peace, justice for all as well as engendering development remains his mission and purpose in the upper legislative chamber of the National Assembly.
The essence of Christmas, Senator Nnamani advised, should not be lost on merriment alone but the promotion of love, forgiveness, care for the less privileged and peaceful coexistence.
He expressed hope that with peace and synergy between and among the three arms of government, workable policies and programmes would be fashioned out for prosperity in the new year.