By Tife Olajuwon
The president of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has deemed it fit to attack the politicians and traditional leaders of the
country, accusing them of insincerity.
According to the president, “Nigeria is a country of pretenders” he said in Abuja yesterday during a parley with Northern Christian
Elders’ Forum and traditional rulers from northern states. He stated matter of factly that nothing would work in the country until leaders and followers start to tell each other the truth.
He went on to say that there was a misconception in the south about northerners and their religious tenets, despite the fact that both have existed as one since 1914.
He urged the over 30 rulers who were drawn from from the North-Central, North-West annd North-East who were present at the
parley to correct the anomaly.
Addressing the traditional rulers, Oritsejafor said: “There was a time in this country, if you needed to call Ivory Coast, you will have to call France in order to connect with the person. It was a terrible system. In a sense, that is what has been happening.
Let me say that when I was growing up, we were deceived to believe that everybody from northern Nigeria is a Muslim. We were deceived in a sense to think and believe that everybody in northern Nigeria was Hausa/Fulani. It was one Musa who lectured me and brought me out of my ignorance. So, many people in the South are also ignorant like me. You may not know, but most Nigerians do not know Christian traditional rulers from the North exist in this country.”
Urging them to reach out to their counterparts across the Niger, Oritsejafor said such synergy would bring the much-needed peace that Nigeria needed at this critical stage. “As you strengthen this body, I urge you to reach out to those across the Niger so that a true national dialogue can begin. Share your experiences with your colleagues from the South and learn from each other. The greatest war we are fighting is a war we are fighting against the truth. We hate, fight and fear the truth. It is so unfortunate.
Nigeria is not free because we are running away from the truth. Truth can be bitter, but when you swallow it, it becomes sweet. No nation can grow without embracing the truth. We are like ostriches. We are a nation of pretenders. We run from the truth and expect our problems to just vanish.
Truth has a way of creating a level-playing field for everybody. We must build a nation on truth. What is happening here is a bold
step towards embracing the truth,” Pastor Oritsejafor added.