The New Year Message
It gladdens my heart to say a resounding HAPPY NEW YEAR 2022 to all Nigerians irrespective of their religious, tribal and political persuasions. Glory be to our God who helps us to escape all dangers and threats of the Year 2021 occasioned by the criminal activities of the bandits, terrorists, kidnappers and other unscrupulous elements amidst us.
2021 was one year too many as a result of the ways and manners these criminals have been operating with impunity as if this is not the country we have been all these years. It is as if they have taken over the country. They invade communities, markets, churches and schools. They kill, maim, destroy and kidnap without much resistance or hindrance.
They have turned our roads into death traps where they now kidnap for money, apparently due to the poor conditions of our roads and all of a sudden kidnapping has become a big business as the innocent people are being kidnapped and ransom in millions are being demanded and paid. Families of kidnapped people are at the mercy of the criminals! Some were not even fortunate as they were killed after the ransom has been paid! Our security agencies have been overstretched and the best done by our government is far from being enough if we must say the truth without deceiving ourselves. The Police have been parading the arrested kidnappers on the television but surprisingly, it appears as if they are too busy with their investigations to prosecute them!
We have cried in vain for help from the developed world and the United Nations. They seem to be more occupied and busy with COVID-19 than pay attention to the daily destruction of lives going on in Nigeria.
At this juncture, I call on all Nigerians, irrespective of their religious affiliations, to rise up and cry for the mercy of God that can preserve us and bring an end to all these pains. It appears as if our governments have got to their wit end over the menace of insecurity. Their major focus now is on the 2023 general election. Can 2023 election happen if the nation is over-run by criminals? Our nation must survive first and be at peace before election can take place.
Except for the mercy of God to intervene divinely and miraculously, we would be like Sodom and Gomorrah. It is only God who can make the 2023 general election a reality. It is only God in his own way who can teach our leaders the right step to take. It is only God who can send us help from above. Because of the desperate situation we are, some governors are already calling for self-defence and declaration of state of emergency! This is unprecedented.
I call on all our denominational and church leaders to use the opportunity of the New Year Fasting and Prayers programme of our churches to rescue Nigeria from those who are hell bent in destroying it by deliberately praying for the mercy of God over our unfortunate situation. For the Lord our God is a merciful God. He will not leave us or allow these heartless criminals to destroy us. We serve a God who is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
It was in His mercy that He rescued the family of Noah against the Great Flood; He delivered Lot and his family in Sodom and Gomorrah shortly before the destruction of those cities. By his mercy, he delivered Israel from Egyptian captivity without Israel fighting any battle. The list of God’s merciful intervention in human affairs is endless. That same God will surely have mercy on our country in Jesus’ name.
May 2022 be the year of our total deliverance from all manners of insecurity challenges and blood letting in Jesus’ name.
I wish all Nigerians a peaceful and highly prosperous new year.
His Eminence, Rev Dr Samson Ayokunle, the CAN President
31 December, 2021.