The Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commixsion (NCPC), the Reverend Yakubu Pam, has advised young people to use the government's empowerment schemes to develop themselves and contribute to national development.
Pam delivered the advice as she hosted the Pentecostal Christian Youth Fellowship of Nigeria (CPFN) in 19 Northern States and Abuja, and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Youth Wing, on Wednesday in Abuja.
“The greatest knowledge you will ever have is the one you discover for yourself,” he said.
Pam warned them to always do the right thing and not to lose heart when their voices were not heard.
"Concentrate, many distractions can come, but concentrate, the greatest weapon against distractions is to be concentrated," he advised the delegation.
He also advised them to desist from illicit activities, including blackmail, banditry, cybercrime and other vices.
The head of the NCPC said that young people should aspire to be leaders and have a zeal for hard work.
He urged them to emulate their national bodies that had planned pilgrimages and empowerment trips to Israel, with a focus on agriculture, to economically build themselves and the country.
“They can also plan to be self-funded pilgrims, with the contribution of the church and its groups, just as their national bodies have planned.
"You will get various training and empowerment in countries like Israel that are advanced in agriculture, and it would be of great benefit to the country," he said.CPFN 19 Northern States and Abuja Delegation in a group photo with NCPC Chief Rev Yakubu Pam
Earlier, CPFN president Pastor George Oaya said the visit was to identify with the executive secretary and present him with a "Distinguished Leadership Award."
Oaya said it was on record that the head of the commission had been leading the campaign and promoting the cause of peace and unity in Plateau and the nation.
"Your regular campaign for peace and peaceful coexistence between the two religions has greatly contributed to the reduction of security crises in northern Nigeria," he said.
Similarly, Amb. Ekiye Ekiye, leader of the 19th North and South Youth Wing of the CAN, also praised the NCPC chief for his determination and integrity.
He thanked Pam for her fatherly advice and the role she had played in encouraging young people to focus on life.
CAN's youth wing also presented a "Friendliest Youth Leader" award to Pam.
This, they said, followed his record of good leadership and humanitarian service.
Source Credit: NAN
Archbishop Daniel Okoh, President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), on Monday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, met with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
Okoh, who was elected president of the CAN in July, told correspondents from the House of Representatives that the visit was a courtesy visit to introduce himself to the vice president.
“Of course, you know that the vice president is the number one Christian in politics and government in Nigeria.
“And since my election as President of the CAN I have not had the opportunity to come and introduce myself and have a conversation with him.
“So, this is just a courtesy call to let you know that I am now the new president-elect of the CAN.
“And this is a prelude to the courtesy visit to President Muhammadu Buhari; so that's why I'm here,” he said.
According to him, the CAN is an ecumenical movement and continues to work for Christian unity.
He said that the association was also working to engage other sectors of Nigeria in order to build a united and virile country.
Source Credit: NAN
The Most Reverend Henry Ndukuba, Metropolitan Archbishop and Primate of the Anglican Communion of All Nigeria, says Nigerians must use their votes wisely and elect leaders who come together and put the interests of the country first.
Ndukuba made the call during the church's 2022 Divine Commonwealth Conference in Abuja on Tuesday.
“The long-awaited peace that we yearn for can only be obtained from our elections and participation in the next elections,” he added.
The Primate said that Nigerians must continue to pray for safety, refuse to sell their votes and do the right thing in the elections.
He added that to achieve "a new Nigeria" all citizens must contribute to its growth, one of which is integrity and those who respect the rights of all citizens, not opportunists.Congregation at Conference
“Know that the politicians will want to win. Vote for the candidate who has the political will to stand and do the right thing for the people.
“Our security and freedom, our economy, and to truly fight corruption and not use your power to hunt down your enemies and opponents.
"Vote for leaders who don't weaponize religion, tribe, poverty and insecurity for their selfish political advantage," he added.President of the CAN, Rev. Daniel Okoh
Archbishop Daniel Okoh, president of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), commended the Anglican Communion for its steadfastness and prayers for Nigeria.
He thanked the church for opposing immoral acts, including same-sex marriage and homosexuality.
The CAN president said that the divine purpose of knowing Christ and serving him promotes peace and unity.
“God is aware of our predicaments and when we submit to Him in prayers and supplications, there will be a change.
”The challenges facing the nation, with prayers, can be overcome.
"Nigeria will rise again to be great and in her season of plenty," he added.
Okoh said church and religious leaders have a critical role to play in promoting tolerance, brotherhood, peace and unity.
“Avoid tendencies to short-hand negative acts, vote for candidates who can restore our land, go out en masse and vote,” he urged Nigerians.
He called on the Anglican Communion to be more visible in CAN activities, as their moral, spiritual and experienced hands are needed for the growth of the association.Governor of Delta, Ifeanyi.Okowa
In his speech, Delta Governor Ifeanyi Okowa urged the church to earnestly pray against all negative plots against the country.
Okowa, who is also the Vice Presidential candidate of the Peoples' Democratic Party (PDP), said with prayers, the country cannot go wrong.
He urged Nigerians to pray and vote for better leadership that will redeem the nation during the upcoming general election.
Source Credit: NAN
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) on Friday, held a national prayer over the security challenges in the the country and for peaceful election in 2023.
The CAN President, Archbishop Daniel Okoh while speaking with journalists after the prayers in Abuja, said the aim was to bring about a turn around in the affairs of the country.
He said that it was to beseech God to intercede, so that the country could witness peace and stability, as well as progress in all facets of life.
“As Christians, we are people of prayer and now that our country is preparing for the next general election, one of the major things we should do to support our nation to have a peaceful and non-violent election is to come together and pray.
“And we are people of faith, we believe that any time we call upon Him with sincerity, he answers us.
“So CAN decided that it will be a good thing for us to gather particularly at this time of electioneering campaigns so that the Lord will grant us a very peaceful electioneering campaign and very peaceful seasons of election, ” That is the reason why we gathered Christians on the platform of CAN to do this prayer,” he added.
The CAN president said that it was also important to pray against those creating fears in the minds of the people.
“We have to pray to avert it, we may not know where they are but God, who is the owner of the world, knows where they are if there are any people like that.
“We have come today to pray and ask the Lord to disable the weapons of war and grant us a peaceful Nigeria.
” And restore the people who have been taken away from their lands, to return to their land and enjoy the fruit of their land once again”, the Archbishop said.
Okoh charged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), security agencies and the electorates to use the upcoming election to re-write the story of Nigeria through free, credible and peaceful poll.
“The election is one great opportunity we have to re-write the story of this country, and all hands must be on deck, everyone must be committed.
” The INEC officials, the politicians, their agents, the voters, everybody must be committed towards having a very peaceful election.
“Election that will be seen to be credible not only in the eyes of the politicians, not only in the eyes of Nigerians, but in the eyes of the world”, he added.
In his sermon, the Catholic Archbishop Emeritus of Abuja Archdiocese, John Onaiyekan said in the last decade, Nigeria has witnessed a gradually deteriorating condition, including lack of peace and harmony.
He quoted the book of Second Chronicles chapter 7:14, which encourages believers on a turn around when they become humble and prayerful.
“Then, if my people, who bear my name, humble themselves and pray and seek my presence, and then from their wicked ways, I myself will hear from heaven and forgive their sins and restore their land,” he quoted the verse as saying.
He said it was right and fitting that the leadership of CAN organised the national prayers.
Onaiyekan prayed for God to disarm all those planning evil against the people of the country.
“If there are any evil hidden agenda anywhere, may our God of mercy expose and neutralise them and restore lasting peace to our land,” he added.
Onaiyekan asked Nigerians to pray against natural and self inflected calamities such as flood, insecurity, corruption and economic mismanagement.
He advised Christians to return to God in humble prayers and repentance.
“It is therefore natural that we see a major recourse to prayer by Nigerians of all creeds, in Mosques and Churches”, he noted.
“May the Lord hear our prayers for our nation: that all who are planning evil for our people may be disarmed by the Almighty God, and converted to good behaviour by our loving Saviour,” Onaiyekan said.
Also, the Archbishop of Abuja, His Grace, Ignatius Kaigama, prayed for God’s blessings on Nigeria.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that prayers were offered for a successful elections and census, and for God to avert all evil plans against Nigeria.
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), has directed its states and local chapters, to hold national prayers for divine intervention in the affairs of Nigeria on Friday.
This is contained in a statement signed by John Praise Daniel, Chairman, Local Organising Committee, National Prayer Day, of the CAN on Wednesday.
CAN said that the prayers were also to implore God’s help in preventing violence, manipulation, intimidation of voters and other electoral crimes in the forthcoming elections.
“We consider this imperative in view of the fact that our nation is passing through very challenging times at the moment despite its abundant natural, human, and material resources.
“Nigeria is a vibrant and virile land that is full of colour, wealth and all that it would take to be one of the greatest nations on earth.
“Sadly, the country has not yet reached where it should be at the moment due to some inherent problems,” the Christian body noted.
It said Christian politicians, especially those vying for offices, all bloc, zonal, states and local chairmen, and all Church leaders, should mobilise their members nationwide for the programme.
“We urge all and sundry to join the solemn assembly, in order to usher the country into a new era of peace, unity, safety and all-round prosperity.
“May God use the programme to address the spiritual dimensions of the challenges plaguing the nation and frustrate every evil plan against the unity of the people,” CAN added.
It said that the prayers in Abuja would hold at the National Christian Centre on Friday by 10:00 a.
The Federal Government through the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Thursday distributed relief materials and grains to victims of flood in Osun.
Speaking during the distribution in Osogbo, NEMA Director-General, Alhaji Mustapha Ahmed, said that the damage and loss assessment carried out by the agency revealed that 4,200 households were affected by the floods.
Ahmed also said that the report revealed that several houses were destroyed, while cultivated hectares of farmlands were submerged.
He said following the assessment report, President Muhammadu Buhari, had approved the release of 12,000 metric tonnes of assorted grains from the National Strategic Reserve Stock for distribution to all states of the Federation and the FCT.
Represented by Mr Slaku Bijimi, the Deputy Director, Disaster Risk Reduction of the agency, Ahmed said the grains and the relief materials would be distributed directly to the deserving persons.
Ahmed said that the distribution would be done in collaboration with the state government, senators from the state and the minister representing the state.
“We all agree that in the last couple of weeks, several states of the federation including Osun State have suffered widespread flood.
“The flood unfortunately resulted in loss of lives, human displacement, loss of means of livelihood and socio-economic dislocation.
“The current global economic meltdown and pre-harvest food shortages have further exposed the vulnerability of the affected population.
“It is pertinent to reiterate the global standard that no government anywhere in the world can compensate individual losses from disaster occurrence.
“In the same vein, the Federal Government through NEMA cannot compensate persons impacted by disasters.
“Yet we all have responsibilities to help them get back and restart their normal life by assisting them with this type of relief intervention being presented today.
“This relief intervention is a testimony that the Federal Government through NEMA is always concerned about the welfare and wellbeing of the good people of Osun State,” he said.
In his remarks, the General Manager, Osun Emergency Management Agency, Mr Amos Adejinle, said that the grains and relief materials would go a long way in alleviating the suffering of the affected masses in the state.
Also, Gov. Gboyega Oyetola, appreciated the Federal Government for bringing smiles to the faces of the victims of flood in the state.
Represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr Wole Oyebamiji, Oyetola said that since the inception of his administration, the state had been in the good book of NEMA.
He said the state had been receiving notable assistance for the benefit of the teeming population that had been affected by one disaster or the other.
Mr Abdulraheem Adekilekun, who represented Muslim community at the event, said the distribution of the relief materials show that government was responsive to people’s needs.
Adekilekun appealed to government to ensure that the materials get to the vulnerable persons.
Also, Pastor Amos Ogunrinde, the Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Osun Chapter, commended the Federal Government for the relief materials.
Ogunrinde urged government to ensure that the grains and relief materials get to the affected persons.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the items distributed included bags of rice, garri, maize, vegetable oil, sorghum, tin tomatoes and seasoning cubes, among others.
None food items distributed are nylon mats, treated mosquito nets, bath soaps, guinea brocade, children wears, women’s wear and men’s wears among others.
The Oyo State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has identified get-rich-quick syndrome as one of the causes of social vices such as ritual killings in the country.
The State Chairman of CAN, Apostle Joshua Akinyemiju, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Ibadan.
He was reacting to the rising cases of killings and other vices across the country.
He said that the socio-cultural dynamics characterised by heterogeneous population with an underlying ethno-religious tension was also causing division in the country.
According to him, economic factors such as: unemployment, high inflation and poverty drive insecurity across the country.
He said that some youths had chosen to join criminal elements and militant groups for economic survival.
The Cable, an online publication , in its May 30 publication reported that at least 391 persons were killed by mobs across several states in Nigeria between 2019 and May 2022, quoting a report by SB Morgen (SBM) Intelligence.
The report examined the frequency of mob justice, also known as jungle justice, across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) as well as the number of casualties from January 2019 to May2022. According to the report, 391 persons were killed in 279 incidents in the period under review.
Akinyemiju noted that environmental factors caused by climate change had led to conflicts and an increased competition for scarce land resulting in land grabbing in parts of the country.
While emphasising that an idle hand remains the devil’s workshop, he urged the government to create more jobs, especially for the youth.
“There should be transparent and equitable distribution of resources among the various regions of the country.
“The laws of the country should be more stringent; he who kills by the sword should die by the sword without any waste of time.
’ He said that the nation’s law enforcement and intelligence agencies should be better trained and equipped with appropriate weaponry to be able to combat banditry, kidnapping and other vices rearing their ugly heads.
He also implored the government to be sensitive to emerging insecurity trends around the nation’s borders and fortify them against likely foreign invaders.
He advised parents and guardians to monitor the activities of their children or wards more efficiently.
“ Churches should always advise their faithful to remain on the Lord’s side and do only those things that are acceptable to him,” he said.
Also, Pastor Francis Oghuma of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Jesus Place, Oluyole Ibadan, identified aggravated anger resulting from idleness, celebration of thieves and looters by the society as some of the causes of vices being experienced in recent times.
“The youth that see leaders go unpunished for gross misconduct will in turn engage themselves in violating the laws.
’’ Oghuma also condemned the uncivilised attitudes of some politicians which he said had corrupted the hearts of many youths.
He said that some youths would always believe that they would get away with their barbaric habits because they could count on the support of unscrupulous politicians.
He advised the judiciary to be alive to its responsibility and bring sanity to the society through prompt administration of justice to those docked for prosecution.
He also listed poor upbringing due to bad parental mentoring, negligence, and those who indulge in ritual killings as parts of the menace facing the country.
He urged parents to return to godly parenting, mentoring, and not placing far reaching demands on their children still struggling to survive.
“The government must rise to the occasion by securing lives and property.
It should embrace good checks on the influx of drug substances which are creating menace in our society.
“Youths must remember that ‘Karma’ is real, and that he who kills by the sword cannot escape same.
President, For His Glory Evangelistic Ministries of the United States of America, Rev. Rob Welch and other church leaders arrived in Jos on Sunday on a week-long crusade.
Their mission is to pray for Plateau and for Nigeria.
Welch and his team of clerics arrived in Jos for an interdenominational crusade, the first of its kind in West Africa with the theme: “The Jesus Jos City Mega Festival and Miracles’’.
Addressing newsmen on arrival, Welch noted that some people did not have peace in their lives.
“God has sent us here that you might have peace with Him through the Lord Jesus Christ.
“I am grateful that God is moving in this city and we are going to see so many come to faith in Christ.
“There will be miracles; people healed and others delivered,’’ the cleric said.
He urged Christians to avail themselves of the opportunity to benefit from God’s goodness that would manifest during the event.
Chairman, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Plateau Chapter, Rev. Fr. Polycarp Lubo, welcomed the clerics into Jos. Lubo was represented by Rev. Bernard Kyengson, CAN’s Director of Planning and Strategic Research.
He admonished Christians to regard the crusade as an opportunity to draw closer to God. National Coordinator, For His Glory Evangelistic Ministries, Mr Benjamin Akanji, stated that the interdenominational crusade was aimed at unifying the body of Christ on Plateau to continue to pray for the nation.
Akanji added that the crusade was also to ensure that souls won were planted in the various churches to continue to propagate the gospel of Christ.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the crusade would begin on Monday and end on Oct. 30.
Residents of some states in the Northwest say governments’ approach of encouraging people to defend themselves in the fight against bandits, is yielding the desired result.
In their responses to a News Agency of Nigeria survey, they said this bold approach, which entailed enormous sacrifice by residents, had forced bandits to soft-pedal in their nefarious activities.
According to them, the hoodlums have realised that the battle is no longer between security agents and bandits, but now involved the ‘people’ as active participants in the fight.
In Katsina, for instance, the State Government said several leaders of bandit groups had reached out to the authorities, seeking for peace.
The Special Adviser to Gov. Aminu Masari on Security Matters, Alhaji Ibrahim Ahmed, told NAN that most of the hoodlums had envisaged a bleak future and were willing to make amends.
According to him, the approach adopted by government targeted at ‘building the courage’ of the people, had started yielding positive results, with the rate of attacks by bandits reduced .
Ahmed said success could be achieved easily through the combined efforts of the citizens, the state government and security agencies.
He said the state government had trained 1,100 highly volunteers to serve as members of community vigilante corps, and were ready to make sacrifices for their communities to survive.
According to the adviser, this is an effort to send a message to the bandits to embrace peace or face tough time.
In Sokoto, a security expert, Sqdr. Leader Aminu Bala (Rtd), observed that activities of bandits had reduced slightly in the past few months, but called for the sustenance of the current military onslaught on the hoodlums.
Also, Malam Laminu Umar, a resident of Sabon Birni in the state, noted that the situation in the area had changed for better.
“The ongoing military operation in our area has helped in checking the activities of the hoodlums.
“Some of the bandits have been neutralized, while others have fled because they cannot withstand the military power; the military operation should be sustained for a long time,” he suggested.
Speaking to NAN, Alhaji Bello Dantsoho, a resident of Rabah in Sokoto State, also observed some improvement.
“They only storm remote areas, pick one or two persons and demand ransom before they release them.
“They have been subdued to the extent that they can no longer launch deadly operations frequently, as was the case in the past.
“This is unlike before when they attacked our people in numbers, killed, raped and stole belongings, including livestock,” he said.
Meanwhile, some religious leaders in Kaduna State have observed that insurgency had remained unabated in the state, but admitted that little success had been achieved.
One of the leaders who is also the Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in the state, Rev John Hayab, said in spite of the little success recorded, the persistence of insurgency was worrisome.
Hayab observed that the number of security agents tackling the challenge was enough but stressed that what was needed was building of the people’s confidence that would encourage sharing of useful information.
According to him, many people are still reluctant to ‘say something’ whenever they ‘see something’ around their environment.
“When you have the understanding and support of all stakeholders and the public, then you have your security beefed-up enough to unravel and tackle every security challenge.
“Only then can you proudly say you are winning the war on insurgency,” he said.
In his contribution, the Acting Administrative Secretary of Jamaatul Nasril Islam (JNI), National Headquarters, Kaduna, Malam Yusuf Bida, said enhanced welfare package for security agents in the front-line, was key.
He added that concerted media engagement efforts must also be intensified to dissuade citizens from serving as informants to hoodlums.
Reacting to recent development in the state, Zamfara State Police Spokesperson, Muhammad Shehu, said the security situation had improved, adding that apprehension and fear among people had subsided drastically.
According to him, the ongoing efforts by police and other security agencies in the fight against banditry activities had been yielding results.
However, former Secretary of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Zamfara, Malam Ibrahim Kanoma, called for deployment of more security personnel to rural parts of the state.
Kanoma also appealed to government and security agencies to ensure close monitoring of security operations in the state.
A community leader in Gusau, Mr Garba Yusuf, urged government to give priority to victims of banditry activities in the state.
Yusuf lamented that thousands of such victims, mainly women and children, had been displaced from their communities due to insecurity, and were in need of intervention from government to save their lives.
In Kebbi State, the Commissioner of Police, Mr Ahmed Kontagora, said his command and sister security agencies, as well as traditional rulers, were putting heads together in confronting the lingering security challenges bedeviling the state.
He said that recently, he and his management team had paid courtesy visits on the Commandant, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Comptroller, Nigeria Correctional Service, Federal Road Safety Corps (FRS C) and Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), among others.
He said the visit was meant to solicit the support and cooperation of the sister agencies in making Kebbi State safe.
The Commissioner appealed to people of the state to cooperate with the police and other security agencies with a view to reducing crime to the minimum.
The African United Christian Leaders Association of Nigeria (AUCLAN), has advised Nigerians, especially the youths, to obtain their Permanent Voters’ Cards (PVC), to vote credible leaders in 2023 General elections.
The Chairman of the association, Rev. Godwill Brown, made the call in Kuje, at UACLAN’s National Congress and Maiden Public Lecture with the theme “The Church, The Nation And Development”.
Brown said “When the righteous is enthroned, the people will rejoice”, adding that there was the need for all Nigerians to vote credible leaders for the development of the country.
According to him, the nation is in need of God’s chosen leader to enable the country move to a better place for strong and sustainable economy to thrive and attain its lofty mandates.
“The occasion is designed to address the growing reluctance by Nigerian Churches in taking their pride of place in the building of a functional, egalitarian, prosperous and godly nation.
“This unpleasant view has made it difficult for the Church to be actively involved in governance and the processes leading thereto.
“As a faith-based and Christ centered inter-denominational amalgam of Christian professionals and researchers, we set out to achieve the realization of strong and sustainable economy for the Church to thrive and attain its lofty mandates.
“Strategically building a critical mass of empowered, enlightened and informed Christian leaders and faithfuls who will facilitate the actualization of a strong economy for the African Church,” he said.
Rev. Brown said AUCLAN is an organisation of Christian faithfuls and technocrats drawn from the academia, public and private sectors, and across different professional divides.
He added that the organisation is designed to promote, protect, safeguard and strategically enhance the attainment of the economic prosperity of six African Churches for sustainable and more effective kingdom service.
Brown disclosed “In line with the foregoing, it is imperative to state that AUCLAN is not, cannot, and shall never be a rival body of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) or any other faith-based forum.
“Rather, we actually exist to unify, strengthen and aggregate the interest of the Church and reposition it for a future of sustained impact in its various assignments and leadership roles in the nation,” he said.
According to Rev. Brown “AUCLAN attempts to assemble erudite scholars and researchers of Christian extraction that will offer research-based solutions to the myriads of dilemma facing the African Continent, our dear nation and importantly, the Church of Christ.
“It will facilitate and provide grants, scholarship and aids to students at all levels for the intellectual and spiritual development of our students and re-orientate the Church on its germane roles in national development, and to drive the process, among others.
“It will unify the Church across denominational divide,” he said.