By Nelson Osuala
“Nothing could be more dangerous to the existence of this republic than to introduce religion into politics”…Robert Green Ingersoll.
The above quotation informs the thesis of my discourse. As we approach the forthcoming general elections, many hearts are filled with enthusiasm, others with worry and the phobia of the supposed resultant outcome of the elections with particular focus to the February presidential election to which Nigerians from all works of life including the roadside market women are now counting days and no longer months. It is my utmost desire to bring to our notice what I consider as the future prognosis of a chaotic and imploding electioneering outcome conceived in with the intent of religiosity, nepotism,sentiments and selfishness.
I am not a religious prophet, but like Prof. Wole Soyinka wrote in one of his novels.. ” ..I AM THE ABIKU..CRYING FOR THE FIRST AND REPEATED TIMES…” It is no mincing words that many Nigerians have made up their minds to vote on the basis of religious sentiments rather than credibility. Some have placed a seemingly divide based on what I may call misguided religious prejudice between the two major presidential aspirants of the Peoples Democratic party and the All progressive Congress (Dr.Goodluck Ebele Jonathan cum Rtd. Gen. Buhari) respectively.
The consequence of this negative mindset in balloting is that it will damn and mortgage the destiny of our future generations. I have received text messages regrettably from some great men and women of God, who try to coerce me into voting for Jonathan because he is a Christian and to not vote for Buhari because he is a Muslim. Some of these people further informs that if I on my own volition decide to vote for say for instance Buhari..that God would judge me.
The question I have for such is…Is God a Christian..? I am of the opinion that God is neither a Christian nor a Muslim. He is neither a Politician nor a Religionist like we suppose him to be. He will neither make Jonathan the president because he(Jonathan) is a Christian, nor will he make Buhari the next president because he is a Muslim.
He is to my best of knowledge an impartial God and Judge. We can only pray for His will to be done. What I suppose we need in this country of ours is …A leader, a statesman with a servant heart and a sincere purpose. We don’t need a Christian nor do we need a Muslim, all we need is a leader.
My point is. It is not about the religious inclination,it is not about the personality but about the credibility of the person. I suppose therefore that its hightime we stopped all these partisan ships which are based on ethnicity, nepotism,egalitarianism, godfatherism, tribalism,prejudice etc and to vote for credibility with the future generation in mind premised upon the fact that if we fail to do this,posterity will not forgive us.
I encourage all Nigerians to go out enmasse on the said date with not just their legs and hands but also with their hearts. I strongly believe that if we will vote not on the basis of religious preference dogmatic mindsets but rather on the basis of credibility of character and thrust..then our future generations will look back and bless us for doing the right thing.
As I conclude i wish to remind us all that whatever would lead us into casting our votes for any of the presidential candidates is what would stand as a testament for or against us. Some would cast their votes based on the material gifts and peanuts they had,have and will be given having sold their consciences for material gifts, others will cast in their votes on the basis of one or more of the afore mentioned sentiments ecetera.
But I only employ you who is reading to bracket your mind from any selfish reasons and to cast your vote with a future referential peaceful and developmental outcome at heart.