President Muhammadu Buhari has implored Nigerians to use the opportunity provided by the Easter season to embrace peaceful co-existence.
According to the president, progress will be practically impossible in an atmosphere of chaos and acrimony.
He also emphasised the need for citizens of the country to keep faith as well as trust in the determination and ability of his administration to change the Nigerian story.
This is contained in a message personally signed by Buhari to Nigerian Christians in commemoration of this year’s Easter celebration.
In the message made available to LEADERSHIP Sunday yesterday, the president wrote: “As we celebrate yet another Easter, I urge all Nigerians to live peacefully with one another and do their utmost to make Nigeria a beautiful place to reside.
“It is in our collective interest to live in peace because without peace, no meaningful and sustainable development can take place. Lack of peace in one part affects in one way or the other, all parts of the country. Our people must rediscover the values of peaceful co-existence, social justice, religious tolerance, dignity of labour and patriotism.
“I enjoin all Nigerians to keep faith in the determination and ability of this administration to change the Nigerian story for the good of all”.
Buhari further observed that in the past two years, his administration had worked hard to meet the expectations of Nigerians by improving security, “especially in the North-East, sustaining the campaign against corruption and have taken steps to revitalize the economy.
“We are determined as never before to continue with the fight against terrorism and insurgency; sustain the peace in the Niger Delta through engagements with stakeholders; and restore peace and stability in other parts of the country”, he added.
The president continued: “The commemoration of this special season in Christianity, is always preceded by fasting, piety, humility, penance and prayers of intercession in the build up to the death of Jesus Christ on Good Friday, an event which reunited man with his Creator.
“The message of Easter is filled with themes of love, faith, sacrifice, dedication, commitment, fulfilment of prophecy, hope, expectation and victory, as espoused in the Scriptures and the teachings and lifestyle of Jesus Christ”.
APC, PDP, Atiku, Others Preach Love, Selflessness
Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has asked Nigerians to be selfless as Jesus Christ was during his sojourn on earth, saying this is what the Easter festivities remind humanity of.
In a statement by its national publicity secretary, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, APC extended what it called best wishes to Christians in the country and all Nigerians on the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
Abdullahi noted: “Easter signifies a time for renewal and rebirth. We hope that there will a rebirth of the belief that each of us is our brother’s keeper, irrespective of our religious, tribal, political and sundry affiliations.
“Indeed, the Easter festivities remind us to be selfless as Jesus Christ was during his time on earth. As we gather with family and friends, let us also spare a thought, prayers and show love to the needy in our respective communities.
“As the country gradually slides out of economic recession, the APC assures Nigerians of government’s determination to restore the economy on the path of growth.
“With the prayers, cooperation and support of Nigerians, the vision of a peaceful and prosperous Nigeria is achievable. The APC calls on Nigerians to continue to support the President Muhammadu Buhari APC-led administration as it works to deliver on the promises made to Nigerians”.
On its part, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) urged Nigerians to imbibe the lessons of Easter and allow them serve as a springboard to rise above the challenges that the country is being confronted with presently.
In his Easter message, national chairman of the party, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff urged Christians, and Nigerians in general, to imbibe the lessons of the resurrection as living evidence that every challenge, including even death, could be overcome through abiding faith in God and dogged determination.
In the message contained in a statement signed by the Deputy National Chairman of the party, Dr Cairo Ojougboh, PDP urged party faithful to pray for the strengthening