By Luminous Jannamike, Abuja
The Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, Most Revd. Ignatius Kaigama has advised the Federal Government to give Nigeria a lasting solution to the twin problems of insecurity and poverty by tackling corruption.
According to Kaigama, corruption which has stood in the way of Nigeria’s progress must first give way for President Muhammadu Buhari’s N13.6 trillion 2021 budget to have a meaningful impact on citizens.
The 62-year-old cleric stated this on Friday in his New Year Message titled, ‘New Beginnings, New Hope’ delivered at Our Lady Queen of Nigeria Pro-Cathedral, Abuja.
Kaigama also proposed the adoption of an effective intelligence gathering and crime prevention strategy to pave the way for a more secured Nigeria this year.
The Archbishop said, “We hope that the budget (N13.6 trillion Naira) for this year will bring about better security and drastically reduce poverty.
“But corruption which has stoutly and consistently stood in the way of our progress in this country must first give way.
“In these difficult times of insecurity, I think of the old woman who makes the sign of the cross in front and behind, claiming it is to avert dangers coming in front and behind. Today, the dangers come from all sides.
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“We must pray and watch. Our security agents must be properly equipped with effective gadgets for intelligence gathering and crime prevention, while every citizen must take security consciousness seriously.”
Kaigama noted that the multiple economic, political and religious crises confronting the country were because some political parties, ethnic or religious groups think they are better than others.
He added, “With this frame of mind, we promote individual or sectional interests instead of what benefits all.
“We need a new beginning. We need to expand our horizon. He or she who loves not the neighbour is living in darkness
“Prejudices of tribe, religion and politics are blinding, crippling and poisoning cordial relationships and destroying trust among Nigerians.”