WorldStage Newsonline– The Lagos West Anglican Diocese has set Tuesday, January 14 as a day of public debate for governorship candidates in Lagos state.
Bishop of the Diocese, The Rt Reverend Dr. James Odedeji, made this known today while unveiling plans by the Diocese to organize the debate.
Speaking on the planned debate, Odedeji said the task of rebuilding Nigeria was an aggregate duty which ought not to be left in the hands of government officials alone.
“While we continue to pray for peace, progress and development of Nigeria generally, and this state in particular, we also have a duty to watch and serve as light to others,” the archbishop stated.
According to him, the special divinely-ordained and directed debate for the governorship candidates of political parties participating in the 2nd March, 2019 election in the state fixed for 14th of January, 2019, is part of the Diocese contribution to good governance in the state, and the country in general.
Bishop Odedeji stated that about 10 political parties, including the PDP, APC, SDP, ADC have indicated interest to participate in the debate, adding that others are likely to indicate interest before the deadline set by the planning committee.
“We do not want our people, residents and voters in the state to act in ignorance since the consequence could be catastrophic.
“We expect the candidates to tell all Lagosians their plans on social services, taxation, the economy, tackling corruption, among other things they will do for the state if elected,” Bishop Odedeji said.
He clarified that the diocese was organizing the debate without any support from any quarter but that it was solely funded by the Anglican Diocese of Lagos West in collaboration with Dioceses of Lagos, Badagry and Lagos Mainland.
“To ensure that the debate retains its integrity, we have invited the organized private sector, other Christians and religious bodies to witness the debate. The panel is made up of media practitioners both in electronic and print media,” he said.
The Cleric also said the diocese had set up an election mobilization, sensitization and observation committee under the leadership of Ven. Gbenga Oniye with the task of sensitizing and mobilizing all members of the diocese on the need to exercise their civic right during the election period.
He added that the committee had been working tirelessly towards ensuring that people vote, and that about 150 well trained observers from the diocese would be sent by the church to observe the 2019 elections and report formally.