Jonathan at Christmas Day service promises solid foundation that will stand the test of time
Abuja (WorldStage Newsonline)-- President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria said on Tuesday that his administration has laid solid foundation in critical sectors that will stand the test of time.
Jonathan who spoke during the Christmas Day service at the Diocese of Abuja Anglican Communion, the Cathedral Church of the Advent Life Camp, Gwarinpa, Abuja, said the infrastructure government is putting in place will outlive the administration.
The President who was accompanied by his family members, some cabinet ministers and personal aides, in his short remark reassured that his administration will fulfil its promises to the people.
He said, "I want to reassure Nigerians that we are committed and will keep faith with our promises. At least what we are doing in agriculture, transportation and power has been noted by the Primate.
"We have laid solid foundation for power, agriculture and transport sectors and I can assure you we will not go back again.
"By human thinking our administration is slow, I won't say we are slow but we need to think through things properly if we are to make lasting impact. If we rush we will make mistakes and sometimes it is more difficult to correct those mistakes.
"I want to assure Nigerians that any step we take whether little or giant, we won't go back. And where we need to act fast we will do so, that we demonstrated with the flood disaster because it required immediate response.
"Democracy must be dictated by ballot papers and I think we have achieved that with electoral reform. We will not go back but will continue to improve.
"For our transformation to be sustained we Nigerians must be reformed. We must not see our country as where we make money only and build walls and live as prisoners because of the criminal activities of few".
The President also underscored the need for re-orientation in the country, noting that a situation where some criminal minded Nigerians vandalise government properties to sabotage government's effort must be condemned as such actions are tantamount to the transformation plan of the government.
"People play politics with things that affect even their own lives. You wonder why a person that carries saw to go and cut down a conductor carrying cables that produce electricity, because you want a government to fail. This happened somewhere in Enugu. You begin to wonder if they are humans. That is why we need to reform if we must transform."
The president also said the church has a critical role to play if democracy must be sustained.
"The sermon today brought a number of things to lime light, our transformation in agriculture and others.
"When we were planning for our campaign, we spent a whole day debating on what should be our theme and we settled for transformation. At the time it sounded strange and many people even asked what are we transforming but I'm glad that today people are beginning to see the transformation.
"The church has a great role to play if the transformation must succeed because you can't transform without reformation and is the role of the church to do so.
"I urge the church to come up with various programmes to talk about how we Nigerians can be reform.
Earlier in his sermon, the Primate of all Nigeria/Bishop of Abuja Diocese, Most Rev Nicholas Okoh, challenged the Federal Government on the need to ensure that Nigerians in the coming year are free from Boko Haram harassment, armed robbery, kidnapping, those who practice political wickedness and the likes that have kept them in constant fear.
In his sermon titled "The message of the messiah presence in our midst", Rev. Okoh said the issue of armed robbery and kidnapping is more of greedy and not of unemployment as many might want to make people believe, as no employment can pay them N50 million or more per job done as they constantly rake in. He noted that those who have taking to crime cannot justify it.
Preaching from the books of Isaiah 9: 1-6, and John1:14 Most Rev. Okoh, decried that Kidnappers were holding Nigerians to ransome and have heighten tension in the land to the extent that people are afraid to travel home to spend time with family and friends.
"We cannot justify them (kidnappers) by looking at the issue of unemployment. A kidnapper is looking for big money and not a job. There is no place of employment that can pay you N50 million or more for one job done. There is something wrong with our psyche if kidnappers have settled for that as a source of livelihood".
He said to government, there is need to end the Boko Haram harassment, stressing that since the incidence of Boko Haram many have stopped going to church.
Rev. Okoh also prayed that in coming years Nigeria will have perfect security, people will no longer have fear for personal security.
According to him, "Jesus Christ has come to give us eternal salvation, shine his light in the darkness of the world. He has come as the Prince of Peace. He came down to lift up the poor.
"The Lord came with the gospel of transformation and power that has transform us from darkness to light. If you want to know God and his workings, then look at Jesus.
"He has given us moral light to shun what is wrong and do the right thing.
"We need to embrace peace in this country. We have of late been praying to have peace between man and man in our country. The Christian faith does not encourage tit for tat for the frequent killings because Christians are peace bearers. Irrespective of provocations, we must promote peace.
"It also has the solution to the frequent tribalism that has affected us and cause chaos.
"For all in leadership traditional, religious, political, the emphasis of leadership is the poor, the down trodden. At all times their welfare and relief must occupy the priority of the leaders.
"We need to thank God for what the government is trying to do that we will no longer be slave to massive rice producers like Thailand.
"Is difficult to understand why it took us so long to realise that if we produce our rice that we can eat and generate jobs for our people. Also we have started producing bread with local content and is good news to the poor. It will be political miracles if we have constant power supply and it will be good news to the poor.
The development of the railway system and the construction of road also will be good news to the poor.
"Following the story of incarnation, the government can continue to come down to the poor because God is interested in the affairs of the poor".
Prayers were said for the first family, government and the entire country.
The First Lady, Mrs. Patience Jonathan took the old testament lesson from Isaiah 9:2, 6&7
President Jonathan read the Epistle from the book of Hebrew 1:1-12.