All the presidential candidates for the 2023 general elections general election should not deceive the voters but fulfil their commitments to the suggestions put forward as solutions to the crisis facing the country, the Christian Association of Nigeria advised on Thursday.
The advice followed the recent interaction by CAN with Nigerians of diverse religious, ethnic and social classes on the problems of the country as well as the possible solutions to them which were articulated in a document known as, ‘The charter for a new Nigeria.’
The position of CAN on certain national issues based on the document was presented to the presidential candidates at the just-concluded interactive session with them held in Abuja.
Among the candidates were Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu (All Progressives Congress); Alhaji Atiku Abubakar (Peoples Democratic Party); Peter Obi (Labour Party); Adewole Adebayo (Social Democratic Party) and Prof. Christopher Imumolen (Accord Party.)
The President of CAN, His Eminence, Archbishop Daniel Okoh, in a statement in Abuja called on the presidential candidates who have made up their minds to execute the suggested solutions to the country’s challenges as spelt out in the charter to walk that talk seriously if elected in 2023.
He said, “On behalf of the national leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, I sincerely commend the presidential candidates that honoured our invitation to the just-concluded interactive session with a view to discussing issues that will promote the common good of every citizen of Nigeria.
“Their decision to meet and dialogue with CAN officials and other Christian leaders ahead of the 2023 general elections is remarkable not only because the Church is a critical stakeholder in the Nigerian project, but also because it provided us with a platform to collectively review our understanding of the crisis of development and governance facing our nation and find a lasting solution to them
“CAN salutes the candour of all the presidential candidates who participated in the interactive session and charge those among them who have made up their minds to execute the suggested solutions to our national crisis as spelt out in the charter to walk that talk seriously, if elected in 2023.
“However, there is a need for proper understanding of the issues on ground and thorough planning to ensure that pronouncements do not end up as mere rhetoric while an impatient public counts the days – for implementation.
“In view of the fact that the apex Christian body understands that Nigeria’s next helmsman will be under serious pressure to make an immediate impact upon assumption of office next year, we make a solemn promise to keep our doors open for further discussion on how best to make these laudable ideas a reality for the public good.
“Let no one get it twisted, the engagement with the 2023 presidential candidates was neither a campaign programme nor an endorsement event. The position we have taken on any issue of national concern, especially when it relates to leadership and governance, is in the interest of inclusivity and respect for our plurality as a nation.”
While wishing all the presidential candidates safety and security as they campaign vigorously for votes in the next three months, he reiterated the promise of CAN to continue to work and pray for a violence-free election in 2023.
The CAN President told all Nigerians to, before marching to the polls in 2023, listen dispassionately to all that the presidential candidates have to say and judge from the depths of their consciences who will best lead the nation into a new era of peace, security, prosperity and collective progress.