Gôvernor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta and Vice-Presidential Candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has urged Nigerians to pray for the peace of the nation as the elections draw close.
The governor gave the charge in his Christmas message through his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, as Christians across the world celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ.
Okowa reassured Nigerians and the people of the state that the mission to recover Nigeria was on course and would be realised.
He called on Christians to continue in their prayers for a peaceful nation, especially as the elections were close.
He said that the 2023 polls would usher in a new and positive life for Nigerians.
Okowa reminded citizens that Christmas was a season of love and care for one another as Jesus Christ came with joy and peace to save the world.
He, therefore, urged everyone to use the opportunity of the season to promote peaceful co-existence across the country.
He lauded security agencies for their commitment towards stamping out insecurity in the country and urged them not to lower their guards.
”As the world celebrates Christmas, the birth of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, I call on all Christians; and indeed, all people of Delta and Nigerians, to reflect on the virtues and teachings of Jesus Christ in their lives and activities so that Nigeria and the world will be a better place for all of us.
“While I congratulate all Christians for another Christmas season, I advise all to use the festive period for sober reflections and total spiritual renewal and devotion towards living in peace and harmony with adherents of other religions.
“Let me emphasis that there is hope for the rebuilding of this country as we are about entering the year of transition, and as Christians, we are admonished to pray for the greater good of the nation,’’ Okowa said.
He said that Christmas offered the people the opportunity to reach out to the less-privileged in the society in adherence to the wish and teachings of Christ.
“The period presents opportunity for us to return to God and be steadfast in promoting the virtues of Christ, which are love, peace and harmony in all our endeavours,” the governor said.
He urged Nigerians to unite and pray for peace and co-existence, and eschew bitterness and hatred on the basis of faith, ethnicity or political persuasions.
“I thank our Christian leaders and their counterparts of other faiths in the state and country for conducting themselves peacefully in their religious activities and for joining government in promoting religious and ethnic harmony among Nigerians.
“I urge all religious leaders not to relent in their prayers for the state and country.
“As a state, we have taken measures to ensure that we have a wonderful and very peaceful Christmas celebration across our communities,” he said.
He reaffirmed the administration’s commitment to completing landmark projects and people-oriented policies and programmes, which had direct impact on the lives of the people.
“It is my sincere hope and assurance that the New Year, 2023, will usher in more progress, greater prosperity and enduring fulfillment for all Nigerians.
“As a state and country, we have faced several challenges but because we didn’t give up, we surmounted them and I believe that we can all look forward to 2023 and beyond with greater optimism and hope as my administration works towards finishing strong,” he said.
Okowa wished people and all Nigerians, a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year and prayed for the warmth of God’s love to fill every heart and home in the yuletide.