By Ralph Madugu
The government of the day has failed us. The government of Nigeria has failed to defend our lives and properties. Those were the words of the President of the Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN), Rev. Dr. Amos Mohzo in his address to delegates at the opening of the ongoing 102nd General Church Council (GCC) meeting in Jos, Plateau State.
The cleric said: “We have reach a stage of vulnerability on every side. There are kidnappings, banditry, and killings of innocent citizens. Besides, our roads are no longer safe now.”
Speaking on democracy and governance, he said that, in the search for the right direction, many consultations had been made by denominational leaders, national and state chapters of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and advised Christians to “be careful to hear God clearly and emphatically do what He desires of us as individual Christians, as well as a Church denomination, lest the tragedies that have befallen the Church in Nigeria, in recent times, do not continue.”
Said he: “We must bring to mind what the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) said in its policy document to guide Christians and the Church concerning the choice of candidates in the 2023 general elections. CAN had said that “the emergence of the President of Nigeria through the 2023 General Elections would be a make or mar development for the Church, and should not be based simply on party affiliation, ethnic or regional considerations. The fundamental basis for consideration should be an objective assessment of the candidate based on his character, competence and capability.”
While urging Christians not to take lightly their responsibility in the forthcoming coming polls by ensuring that persons of “godly character, known competence, and demonstrated capability from previous responsibilities are elected into public offices, both at national and state levels,” Dr. Mohzo tasked them to exhibit godly conduct at all polling stations on election day and called all eligible voters to collect their PVCs and justify the numerical strength of the Church because large numbers were important in any election.
The COCIN President further called on Christians to understudy the process involved in producing the right candidates.
“My counsel is that the General Church Council should be bold enough to initiate the process of building up political awareness within her structure to avoid an emotional and fire-brigade approach that will confuse the church.”
Cautioning against politics of ethnicity, segregation and domination, the cleric advised thus: “There is equality in creation and oneness in Christ for us who believe in him. We are not better than someone from different ethnicity. I believe, the basis for bringing someone into power should be competence, character and capacity as directed by the national CAN. It is clearly stated in the scriptures that we should love others.”
Speaking on matters relating to the Church, the cleric thanked COCIN members for what he termed “their collective effort to fight undesirable elements within,” whom according to him, want to thwart the unity of the church.
He added that COCIN would only fulfill the task of taking the gospel to the unreached as we remain one in Christ and emphasized that those who still believe in “glocalistic ideology” which he opined imbedded in tribalism, selfishness, greed and egocentricism should be considered a fresh field of evangelism within.
“We must together agree, based on Christian faith that tribalism is cancerous to our faith. Our unity in the body of Christ must be absolute and upheld. I urge you brothers and sisters to disabuse your minds from looking at the Church as an individual or selected groups personal property. Our Lord Jesus Christ had destroyed the wall of divisions and hostilities among us on the cross, therefore, we must see ourselves as genuine brothers and sisters with one inheritance of the Kingdom of God.”
Giving an update on the Karl Kumm University, the COCIN President stated that there had been progress in preparation to start academic activities at the 2nd campus in Gindiri and solicited for more support towards the start of the second Faculty of Arts in 2023.
There were goodwill messages from Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State, Adagwom Izere, HRH Dr. Isaac Wakili as well as the Atta Aten of Ganawuri, HRH Da Ayuba Chaimang.
In his good remarks, Gov. Simon Lalong represented by his Deputy, Prof. Sonni Tyoden, acknowledged the support of the Church leadership through prayers and wise counsel to government adding that government had related well with the church since assumption of office and congratulated the COCIN leadership on its 102nd GCC meeting. Special prayers were offered for the traditional rulers, the government, Plateau State and the nation as a whole.