The Federal Government has called on Nigerians and the good people of Osun State to continue to support the efforts of Government so as to bring about socio-economic development in the country.
The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola made the call today at the Third Session of the Synod and Conferment on him, the Ecumenical and Episcopal Award of the Ijesa North Diocese of the Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, held at St Peter Anglican Church, Ijebu-Ijesa, Osun State.
He said that the development of Nigeria cannot be left in the hands of the government which provides leadership alone, but that, the people would have to take responsibility for their own development to move the nation forward.
In a speech titled “LOVE IS THE FOUNDATION OF FAITH,” Aregbesola said, there was the need for self-examination among citizens with a view to making necessary amendments for the benefit of the country especially as we have gone so long after independence since 1960.
The Minister noted further that as humans, we often do wrong things which strip us of coverings of dignity and honour and embarrassingly expose us to shame and disgrace. Adding that, instead of owning up to our mistakes and make amends, we wrongly think the solution lies in hiding them.
Aregbesola who stated that he would be in Osun State for some days to carry out a Presidential directive on Ministers to engage their constituents on security in the aftermath of the #ENDSARS protests in parts of the country, stated further that, he has brought with him greetings and message of love, appreciation and affection from President Muhammadu Buhari to the Church, the Prelate, Congregation and through them, the people of Osun and the generality of Nigerians.
According to him, President Muhammadu Buhari and the entire Federal Executive Council acknowledge our challenges. Adding that, as our leader, the President was confident of our collective capacity to surmount these challenges.
The Minister appreciated the Anglican Diocese of Ijesa North and other churches for their support for him through prayers while he was governor of the state for eight years and for their continued prayers even as he stepped into a higher level of national service.
He called for continued dialogue and peaceful means of conflict resolution at all times.
Stressing that conflict prevention and quick resolution through dialogue are prerequisites to stability and security of lives and property as well as development of the country.
He emphasised that, we have regrettably seen after the protests that all the efforts of a century can be wiped out in a day, which will require not less than 50 years to recover from. That he said, “security and how we protest should be well thought out and moderated.”
Aregbesola therefore urged the youth to seek knowledge, dialogue and debate and peaceful means of conflict resolution and interest articulation and pursuit. Saying that they should begin to think of the long-time consequences of their actions and embrace love.
Quoting from the Holy Bible, the Minister said: “I must not fail to add this for effect. Apostle Paul said in 1st Corinthians 13:13 “So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” Jesus Christ in Mark 12:31 says “The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.
“With these citations it is without a doubt that love is the foundation of faith and hope of salvation. This love is indiscriminatory, let us therefore live this precept of faith in all ramifications. Our nation requires our love, so do the people from our communities, to the states, regions and nation,” he emphasised.
The Minister called on all Nigerians and the good people of Osun State in particular to attune their minds on how to make the state and the nation that haven of habitation, commerce, economic development and the showpiece of our own civilisation and the best that we can offer humanity.
He assured that the Ecumenical and Episcopal Award conferred on him by the Bishop of Ijesa North Anglican Diocese will spur him to continue to seek peace, deepen inter-faith dialogue and accommodation and promote the spirit of ecumenism.
Earlier, the Diocesan Bishop of Ijesa North Anglican Communion and Synod President, Rt. Revd Isaac I. Oluyamo JP, urged the Federal Government to address insecurity and youth’s unemployment in Nigeria, so as to prevent future repeat of the recent #EndSARS protests witnessed in some parts of the country.
He thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for the initiative through the engagement of his Cabinet to reach out to the people at the grass root, as a step to finding lasting solution to security challenges in the country.