The immediate past Speaker of the House of Representatives, Honourable Yakubu Dogara has warned Christians in the country not to waste their votes in the forth-coming 2023 general elections, saying that the adoption of the same faith Presidential and Vice-president Ticket by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) for the nation is antithetical to Nigeria’s quest for nation building.
Dogara who spoke on Tuesday in Abuja at a summit tagged “Meet the Church” organized by the Nigerian National Christians Coalition (NNCC) with the theme; “The role of the Church in Nation Building” stated that every Christian knows that God does not tolerate waste and as such, It is unchristian for the church to waste anything given to them from above.
He argued that the APC ignored warnings by the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Catholic Secretariat, ECWA Church and many other church bodies and adopted the same faith ticket in a manner that negated the fundamentals of nation building, such as shared identity, values and vision.
“The APC adopted the same faith ticket in a country that has never attained nationhood. These warnings were not only ignored but dismissed in one fell swoop by the APC presidential candidate who strangely believes that he can build a strong, secure and viable nation-state without first forging a shared identity, vision and values for our people thereby enabling us transit from citizens of a country into a nation of people with strong shared identity and values.”
“In their convoluted posturing, they have placed state-building ahead of nation-building; a task never before achieved in history and we need no seer to tell us that such endeavour is guaranteed to end in spectacular failure. No divided people have ever built any civilization.
“To demonstrate that the church is right, it is not alone in condemning the same faith ticket. Other prominent Islamic clerics and Muslim leaders have also spoken in the same light. It is a good omen that both Christian and Muslim elites are not complacent over this matter.
“To this end, it will be easy to generate the needed elite consensus that is key to nation-building. All nations are built by elite consensus while all countries that failed at nation-building were destroyed by elite complacency.
“Granted that the Christians and Muslims will always disagree on some issues, there are, however, many things over which we are agreeable. It is enough to forge ahead with the task of nation-building based on those common issues we agree on. It must be noted that just as Muslims alone cannot build a nation out of Nigeria so also Christians alone cannot. We have to work together on “nation formations”, he said.
Dogara commended the church in the country for shaking off the beast of the complacency of the past into fire by speaking up and resisting measures adopted by some political platforms that will hamper nation-building.