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Christmas: Jonathan, Atiku, Tinubu, Obi Express Hope

Former President Goodluck Jonathan, the presidential candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, his Labour Party counterpart, Peter Obi, Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress have felicitated with Nigerians as they celebrate Christmas, Punch reports.

Jonathan specifically called for love, unity and peace among Christians and others around the world.

He made the call in a statement issued by his Media Aide, Ikechukwu Eze, on Friday in Abuja to mark the 2022 Christmas celebration.

The former President urged Nigerians to approach the season of Christmas with optimism and renewed faith in themselves and the country.

“At Christmas, we celebrate love, hope and joy, which the birth of Jesus heralds to the world.

“As individuals and as a nation, we face different challenges. But we should not allow that to weaken our faith in God and our country, as well as imperil our shared promise of greatness and prosperity.

“Let us exhibit love, tolerance, sense of unity and peace towards our neighbours and all around us during this season and beyond,” he said.

In his message, Atiku Abubakar promised Nigerians that they would not be spending their Christmas on petrol queues if voted into power.

In a statement by the Special Assistant to Atiku (Public Communication), Phrank Shaibu, the PDP presidential candidate accused the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) of failing the people who had relied on him to bring succour to them.

He said, “Atiku Abubakar hereby promises Nigerians that this will be their last Christmas that will be spent at a filling station queuing for petrol. Voting the APC in February will be a reinforcement of failure which could push Nigeria into an existential crisis. To Nigerians, we say the ability to change your destiny lies in your hands.

“With the fuel scarcity now continuing till December, the government has run out of excuses, even as most Nigerians are now at the mercy of black marketers who sell petrol as high as N500 per litre. The NNPC which is the sole importer of petrol has failed to live up to its duties, clear evidence that its privatisation is merely cosmetic.

“But the biggest culprit in this mess is President Muhammadu Buhari who is the minister of petroleum. It is saddening that he has failed to bring succour to Nigerians who are suffering from the worsening inflation, unemployment and insecurity.

“It is disheartening that a country that claims to spend $40m daily on petrol subsidy cannot still make the product available to its people. This is clear evidence that the monies are going into private pockets ahead of elections at the expense of Nigerians.

“The APC which is running for a third term through the person of  Bola Ahmed Tinubu is now promising renewed hope after dashing the hopes of millions of Nigerians for the last eight years.

“It is exasperating that Tinubu is promising to remove petrol subsidy when his party has retained it for the last seven years and spent billions of dollars subsidizing criminality. It is obvious that Tinubu’s statement is an indictment on Buhari.”

Meanwhile, Obi has called on Nigerians to remain hopeful for a better nation especially as they prepare for the 2023 general elections.

Obi made this call in his 2022 Christmas Message to Nigerians on Saturday in Awka.

In a statement by his media aide, Dr Valentine Obienyem, the LP candidate said that celebration of Christmas birthed hope in the world, saying, Nigerians should be hopeful for a better and more productive nation.

He restated that Christmas remained a season of love and that the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ should be a constant reminder of how God gave His only begotten son for the salvation of humanity.

The LP presidential candidate said, “We, as humans should therefore, endeavour to make sacrifices, even when it is painful, for the good of others and for our society.”

He encouraged Nigerians to go beyond the festivities and glamour associated with the Christmas season and strive to live out the true essence of the celebration.

Speaking, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu felicitated with his opponents as Christians mark Christmas celebration.

Tinubu, in a statement on Friday, said, “No matter our political differences, we are all Nigerians and we must move this nation forward”.

“Thus, let the hope symbolised by this season of celebration also herald our renewed hope in the Nigeria of our dreams. May the joy and great gift of this Christmas be the renewed hope that we can and will forge a better Nigeria with the help and guidance of Almighty God above.”

Also, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, Deputy Speaker, Ahmed Wase; and Minority Caucus of the House, sent goodwill to Christians at Christmas.

Gbajabiamila said that Christmas should be a period for sober reflection and re-dedication to His teachings and ways.

 The Speaker, in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Lanre Lasisi, enjoined the Christians and other Nigerians to pray for peaceful and successful general elections in 2023.

Gbajabiamila, in the statement titled, “Christmas: Gbajabiamila rejoices with Christians, calls for national prayers,’’ said as the country was getting ready for the general elections, it was imperative for Nigerians to eschew any form of violence and acts that could undermine the peaceful conduct of the polls.

The Deputy Speaker, in a separate statement titled, “Christmas: Wase felicitates with Christians, calls for prayers, unity,’’ called on Christians to uphold the tenets of love, sacrifice and tolerance as symbolised by Jesus Christ.

Wase, in the Christmas message issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Umar  Puma, urged Christians to use the special occasion to show love and kindness to one another.

He also urged the Christians to use the occasion to pray to God to end the security and economic challenges bedevilling the country.

Also, the Minority Leader of the House, Ndudi Elumelu, urged Nigerians to use the occasion to rekindle their trust in God and reinforce their love for one another in the renewed hope of a brighter future for the nation under a purposeful, caring and humane leadership in the coming year.

Meanwhile, the Senate President, Ahamed Lawan, enjoined Christians to spread the messages of love, peace, hope and tolerance that Jesus Christ preached by personal example this Christmas.

Lawan, in his goodwill message, felicitated with Christians while also assuring Nigerians that the National Assembly would continue to promote laws that will further propel development and goodwill across the country.

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Copyright 2022 SIGNAL. Permission to use portions of this article is granted provided appropriate credits are given to  www.signalng.com and other relevant sources.

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