By Chinonso Alozie
Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Youth Wing, yesterday, attacked Muslim Rights Concern, MURIC, for calling on political parties not to give their 2023 presidential tickets to members of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, after the church established the Directorate of Politics.
National Chairman of CAN Youth Wing, Belusochukwu Enwere, who spoke in Owerri, argued that MURIC’s statement was an insult to Christians and an abuse of the freedom of the people.
The Chairman of MURIC in Bauchi State, Idrees Safiyanu Gambo, had, in a statement, Friday, told political parties to pick their presidential candidates from the RCCG and “kiss Aso Rock goodbye”.
While one of the RCCG members, Dele Momodu, is seeking the PDP ticket to contest the 2023 presidential race, VP Yemi Osinbajo, a pastor in the church, is under pressure to run on the platform of APC.
“Since the RCCG has the effrontery to launch a national political structure, the rest of us have no option than to challenge this existential threat. We must work towards our survival before the RCCG tsunami threat sweeps Islam and other Christian denominations out of existence”, Gambo had said.
“It is very clear that the plan of our Redeemer friends is to eliminate other religions or turn their faithfuls into political slaves.
“The ugly experience of our Muslim brothers in Yorubaland where they are persecuted politically and marginalised economically despite their superior numerical strength is enough for us to know what is likely to happen if members of the RCCG take over the reins of power either in Aso Rock or in any state in the manner they are going about it at the moment. We in the North have been watching this ugly development with keen interest.
“In fact, it is unimaginable to expect the emergence of RCCG candidates as winners in Northern States and we will ensure that this does not happen now or any time in the future. We are not unaware of the ‘winner-takes-all’ mentality of the RCCG but Northern Muslims will never expose their land to such obnoxious cultural invasion, as what we want is a society where everyone is treated equally.
“The RCCG declaration of a directorate of political affairs was met with great annoyance by us in the North and it has destroyed any goodwill Christian politicians enjoy here in the North. It is so bad that any Muslim who queues behind a redeemer is now considered a traitor to the cause of Islam and this is not what we want at this critical point in our nation”.
In a riposte yesterday, Enwere stated: “This singular statement of MURIC shows the low level of the said group and how blind they are in the 21st century. For MURIC to say they are challenging RCCG for having the effrontery to launch a political and good governance wing is an insult to our fathers and the entire Christians in Nigeria, especially we the young people”.
“MURIC calling another faith-based group that will queue behind any candidate from RCCG a traitor is an abuse of office and their freedom of association as stipulated in the Nigerian constitution, and their warning to Islamic organizations and Muslim communities against supporting RCCG is indirectly telling them not to support a Christian candidate in 2023.
“It’s the turn of Christians to produce the next president of the country in 2023. We call on them to join hands with us to preach for peace, oneness and help make Nigeria a better place where both Christians and Muslims will be seen as one and have equal rights in all ramifications.”
RCCG had a few weeks ago created the Directorate for Politics and Governance across the country, adding that it was to mobilize support for members aspiring to occupy political offices.