Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has called on Christians to promote love, peace and unity.
Wike who made the call in a Christmas message issued, yesterday, in Port Harcourt, urged Christian faithful to remain committed to the worthy ideals exemplified by Jesus Christ.
He advised the people of the state to use the season to deepen their faith in God who had solutions to all societal challenges.
The governor assured residents of the state that his administration in collaboration with security agencies would ensure peaceful and hitch-free yuletide celebrations.
He advised well-meaning individuals in the state to use the season to reach out to the less-privileged as a measure of deepening friendship and communal living.
Oyetola: Embrace love
Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of Osun State urged Nigerians to embrace love, tolerance, generosity and peaceful co-existence, which Jesus Christ stood for as they celebrate Christmas.
In a Christmas message in Osogbo, he said the celebration offered Nigerians the opportunity to reflect on God’s love and compassion for man as epitomised in the gift of Christ to the world.
He enjoined Christians to use the period to reflect on their relationship with one another and also show love to their neighbours.
Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Ismail Omipidan in a statement, quoted Oyetola as also urging residents in the state to shun religious intolerance, but work together for the progress of the state.
“While this is traditionally a time for joy and celebration, I urge us all to do so in moderation. This period actually calls for introspection and continued prayers for our dear state and nation, taking into consideration the continued rise in cases of COVID-19. We must ensure we be our brothers’ keepers by adhering to all COVID-19 protocols.
“Let me reiterate that all youth carnivals, countdown to new year ceremonies have been banned. Let us use this season to increase our acts of kindness and touch the less privileged in our society. We are now not just responsible for securing each other’s health, but for helping to secure each others’ livelihood.”
Ugwuanyi prays for God’s divine intervention
Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State called on Nigerians to offer sustained prayers for God’s divine intervention and abiding grace for the nation to surmount its various challenges, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and second economic recession in five years.
Ugwuanyi stated this in a message where he felicitated with Christians, the people of Enugu State and all Nigerians on this year’s Christmas.
He urged Nigerians not to lose faith in God in the face of adversity, but to remain committed to the good news that Jesus Christ was born to bring salvation to mankind.
He stressed that the Yuletide offered Nigerians the opportunity to reflect soberly, pray for the country and her leaders, as well as engage in activities that promote peace, unity, security and progress.
Mark preaches peace
Former Senate President, David Mark, urged Nigerians to be their brothers’ keeper in spite of the socio-economic and security challenges facing the country.
He also canvassed religious tolerance among Nigerians in a manner that would give every adherent freedom and liberty to worship.
Mark, in a statement by his media aide, Paul Mumeh, advised religious leaders across board to preach the message of peace, unity and good neighbourliness to make the country safe.
He urged Nigerians to imbibe the culture of can-do-spirit even in the face of daunting socio-political and economic challenges.
He pleaded with governments at all levels to provide the needed compass to lead citizens alright to facilitate the nation’s economic recovery.
Ekweremadu preaches love
Former Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu called on Nigerians to imbibe the attitude of love in their dealings, which he described as the core essence and message of Christmas.
He stated this during the 2020 edition of “Christmas With Widows”, an annual outreach to widows which he undertakes with his wife, Nwanneka in Enugu West Senatorial District.
At the event which featured presentation of gifts and other support materials to 300 widows, the lawmaker stressed that in the absence of a functional social security system, it was important for Nigerians to be their brothers’ keeper.
His wife, Dr. Nwanneka Ekweremadu, assured widows that they would never walk alone.
“Our presents might not be much, but it is from the depth of our hearts and you can always rest assured that our family will continue to stand by you,” she said.
Overcome Fear, Trepidations – Ngige
Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige has urged Nigerians not to allow tribulations upset the assurance that only God Almighty rules in the affairs of men.
The minister in a Christmas message said Nigerians “should not give in to fear and trepidation. The restoration of hope to mankind which Christians celebrate at Christmas should be a pillar of optimism in an unusual year marked by health, economic and socio-political challenges, widely dominated by the global Covid-19 pandemic that has left the world on bended knees.”
Quoting Pope Francis, the minister prayed that the birth of the “human face of the invisible God and the reassurance that God is intimately involved with humanity,” restores hope and succour to all Christians and Nigerians at large.
“May this Christmas bring the year 2020, its tears, ruins and cascading distresses to an end while re-making our lukewarm heart to once more glow.
Hence, may we have a merry Christmas, but allow the sobriety that the time demands, stir not only our faith in God but also sensitivity to the demands of responsible citizenship in a world conflicted by social upheavals and riven by COVID-19 health challenges,” Ngige said.
Adeola: Renew faith in Christ
Chairman, Senate Committee on Finance, Solomon Adeola, has urged Christians to renew their faith in Jesus Christ as they celebrate Christmas.
He also urged his constituents and Nigerians in general to observe all prescribed guidelines against COVID-19 during the period.
Adeola who represents Lagos West in the senate said “Christmas symbolises the celebration of the birth of a new dawn for the salvation of all humanity, especially for Christians.”
The senator called for caution in the display of positive emotion in view of threats of the second wave of COVID-19.
He expressed optimism that 2021 would be a better year, especially as COVID-19 vaccines had been developed, and that the country would most likely exit recession by the first quarter of the new year.
“I urge all Nigerians to be patient and look forward to a better future. With abiding faith in Jesus Christ, all our challenges will be a thing of the past as we move to, hopefully, a glorious New Year,” he said.
Obi urges fear of God in public services
Vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2019 election, Mr. Peter Obi, has urged public office holders in the country to put God ahead in their service to the people, advising them to see their offices as platforms for service to God and man.
In his Christmas message, he explained that the reason for the season, which was the coming of the Messiah, serves as a moment of reflection for leaders to re-examine their lives and turn back to God.
He said it was also an opportunity for political leaders and public office holders to reflect on the leadership qualities of Jesus, and learn from His meekness, humility and compassion for the people.
Obi, who lamented the level of poor governance in Nigeria, attributed it to the lack of fear of God and respect for humanity on the part of public office holders, bent on pursuing self gains.
He said it was the absence of God’s doctrines in our leadership that leads to moral and political decadence, corruption and lack of prudence in governance.
“The dearth of true leadership and good governance in Nigeria stems from absence of godliness among leaders, which manifests in form of, but not limited to, corruption, self-aggrandisement, looting of public funds, financial imprudence and political irresponsibility.
“The enormous wastage in our public service today by leaders derives from greed and lack of understanding of the true definition of leadership with the fear of God,” Obi said.
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