Nigeria’s Catholic Bishops, CBCN, have taken a stand on rising insecurity, the electronic transmission of results and the call for the break-up of Nigeria.
The Catholic bishops, in a statement released at the end of the second plenary meeting of the Nigerian Catholic Bishops’ Conference (CBCN), Enugu, called on the government of President Muhammadu Buhari to adopt the inclusion of all ethnic groups in the decision making and policies of the nation to avoid a disruption.
The clergy urged Nigerians and the government to follow the path of unity and dialogue in order to unite the nation and not cause a rift.
The CBCN also demanded that the government ensure a fair and equitable trial of the main actors arrested in the struggles to limit the cases that trigger new preventable unrest and call for a breakdown.
Part of the statement read: “We urge the government and citizens to work for a nation in which everyone and every party, regardless of tribal, religious or political affiliation, will have a sense of belonging. We reiterate that the struggle for the “soul” of Nigeria, which is currently underway, will not be won by ethnic cleansing, nepotism, kidnappings and banditry, but by love, justice and fairness. , the common good and patriotism.
“We therefore urge the government and all Nigerians to follow the path of justice and conciliatory dialogue and to see themselves as agents of peace and development in order to ensure a harmonious and united nation.
“We are thankful that God still exists as a nation. This despite various agitations and struggles for self-determination. We observe that the turmoil and tensions are mainly due to poor governance, injustice, inequity and injustice in the appointments and distribution of resources in some parts of the country. We recognize the rights of peoples to self-determination; however, we stress that the exercise of these rights must be done within the limits of the rule of law.
“As a church, we take a keen interest in the political situation in our country. Although the Church does not support any political party, it supports all governments that prioritize the well-being of citizens.
The Church has also condemned government policies that do not promote development and the common good.
They called for fair and credible elections in 2023, calling on the National Assembly to overturn its decision against electronic transmission of results, stressing that this would create room for vote rigging.
“We stress that there is an urgent need for a fair and credible electoral process, through which our political leaders emerge. Therefore, we declare loud and clear that the recent National Assembly vote against electronic transmission of election results will create an opening for further manipulation of electoral votes and lay the groundwork for further conflicts in future elections.
“We call on the National Assembly to reconsider its position in the light of global best practices,” the statement added.