The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) is calling on Nigerians to work for the betterment of the country and not lose hope despite the challenges facing the nation.
President Bola Tinubu, who came to power at the helm of Africa’s largest economy in May, launched an ambitious reform agenda to attract investment and address a cost-of-living crisis. He ended a costly fuel subsidy and lifted restrictions on the naira currency.
Since then, fuel prices have tripled, the naira has lost 41 percent of its value against the dollar on the official currency market and, according to the World Bank, food prices have surged more than 31 percent. Overall inflation exceeded 28 percent in November. Poverty in Africa’s most populous nation rose from 40 percent in 2018 to 46 percent this year, the World Bank said.
But in CAN’s 2023 Christmas message to Nigerians, the body is admonishing the citizens should not lose hope.
“As Nigerians, we are faced with numerous challenges, but we must not lose hope. Instead, we must use this season to renew our commitment to building a better Nigeria for future generations,” CAN President Archbishop Daniel OkohPresident said.
“Let us work towards fostering an environment where every Nigerian can thrive, where justice and equity prevail, and where peace and prosperity abound.”
According to him with the birth of Jesus Christ, Nigerians, especially Christians must emulate Him by forgiving others and accommodating others.
“Let us emulate the example set by Jesus Christ and strive to cultivate a culture of forgiveness and understanding in our communities and nation at large,” the cleric’s statement read partly.
“During this season, we are reminded to seek to be more like Jesus by reaching out to our neighbors with words of peace. In a diverse country like Nigeria, characterized by multiple ethnicities and religions, we must always strive to seek what unites and binds us together rather than what divides us,” the preacher added.
While also telling them to show love to others, the CAN leader said: “Though we may be experiencing economic hardship, let us not forget those who are on the margins of society.
“We must share our resources with them and give them a sense of belonging, as Christ would do. Let us strive to build a nation where peace, justice, and unity prevail. May the joy and blessings of Christmas be with you all.”
By Emmanuel Egobiambu
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