A group under the aegis of the Christ’s Redeemers’ Union (CRU) has alleged that President Muhammadu Buhari is interested in the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) for selfish reasons.
The Punch reports that the group says the president wants to replace the present president of the religious body, Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, whose tenure expires in July 2016, with a candidate ‘ordained’ by the All Progressives Congress (APC) so as to avoid any opposition to his government from the Christian community.
The national director of CRU, Dr Abednego Olusola, in a statement on Sunday, February 21, stated: “A top official in the Presidency, who is spearheading the campaign, has started deploying resources for logistics towards ensuring the emergence of a church leader in the northern part of the country believed to be friendly with Buhari.
“The government officials funding some religious leaders in the North have been recruited as foot soldiers to perfect the strategy. There is tension now in CAN and the action of the Presidency has polarised the association along North-South dichotomy, as northern religious members are being lobbied to support the plot.”
Reacting to the allegation, special adviser to President on media and publicity, Femi Adesina, said the president has never been interested in the internal affairs of any organisation, not even CAN.
He said: “Buhari does not interfere in the internal affairs of any organisation. “It means that some Nigerians don’t know their President. Your president, Muhammadu Buhari, does not interfere in things like that; so, they need to know the person who is their president.
“The people making the allegation can’t insist that they are correct because that is the man for you and Buhari doesn’t interfere in anything. If he doesn’t interfere in state elections where his own party, the APC, is having candidates, how will he interfere in CAN elections? They don’t know their president.”
Meanwhile, President Buhari will today, begin a week-long official visit to Saudi Arabia and Qatar, where he will hold prayers for greater peace, prosperity and progress in Nigeria. Disclosing details of the president’s trip in a statement issued in Abuja on Sunday, February 21, Femi Adesina, special adviser to the president on media and publicity, stated that President Buhari will be accompanied by a high-powered federal government delegation, comprising of the Minister of State (Petroleum) and Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, (NNPC), Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, among others.
He said the president will first fly to “Riyadyh for talks on Tuesday with King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and senior officials of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”