Rev. Samuel Ayokunle, National President, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), on Monday tasked Nigeria’s leaders to use their God-given position to rescue the country from bitterness.
Ayokunle made the call when he paid a courtesy call on Dr George Akume, Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, in Abuja.
The CAN president, who congratulated Akume on his new appointment, reminded him of his good works during his tenure as Benue governor.
Ayokunle thanked Akume for approving plots of land for the establishment of Baptist secondary schools in Benue when he was governor, saying that the Baptist schools were contributing to the growth of education in Benue.
“I see your appointment as well-deserved; your choice is no doubt a demonstration of the fact that the federal government has confidence in your ability and capability to handle the ministry.
“I have no doubt about your sterling leadership qualities, simplicity and commitment to national development. These qualities earned you the appointment.”
Ayokunle challenged leaders to work toward the return of peace in Nigeria, saying that the nation was in great pains.
“The location of Nigeria is good, but like Jericho of old, the land is barren and the water is bitter. If we can develop a new heart, a new mind, we can bring Nigeria back on track, employment can be everywhere in our nation.”
He tasked those in authority to create enabling environment for youths to secure jobs and become assets to the society, adding that Akume had a great role to play as a minister in moving the country forward.
In his response, Akume thanked the president and his entourage for the visit, saying that CAN was established to promote the glory of God and to encourage growth and unity of Churches.
Akume added that the body was also established as an instrument to promote understanding, peace and unity among the various people of Nigeria.
According to him, such responsibilities are enormous and require a man who is gifted and called by the Almighty to lead and handle the responsibilities.
“Mr President, you understand the structure of this country; we are very complex. As a country with diversities, we can only progress if we exploit these diversities appropriately.”
Akume cautioned Nigerians, especially its leaders, against negative words capable of destroying the unity existing among the divers groups.
He charged Muslims and Christians to work in harmony, and assured CAN of government’s determination to create 10 million jobs for Nigerians every year, so as to tackle poverty among vulnerable Nigerians.