…says Enugu guber process credible, transparent_
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has distanced itself and its members from the alleged rejection of results of the March 18 governorship election in Enugu State by a group of faceless bishops in Umuahia, Abia State, saying the purported bishops did not represent the Christian community even as it condemned the brazen attacks on the Enugu governor-elect, Dr. Peter Mbah, by the group as sponsored by desperate politicians.
Addressing the Body of Christ, the CAN Chairman, Enugu State Chapter, Rev. Emmanuel Edeh, said the news about certain faceless bishops under the aegis of the so-called “Network of Evangelical Bishops of Nigeria (NEBN)” who had allegedly converged at the capital of Abia State to accept the results of Abia State gubernatorial election while rejecting that of Enugu State came to them as a rude shock, stressing that the process and election that produced Mbah as the state governor-elect were credible and transparent to the whole world even as it was on ground in the state to give first-hand information.
Describing the faceless bishops, if they existed, as sponsored meddlesome interlopers to cause confusion and distrust in the state, the CAN Chairman queried the basis of the alleged submission made by the bishops as it did not represent the true reflection of what transpired in the state, maintaining that none of the said bishops was an election observer or resides in Enugu State.
“For a group of people to have gathered themselves at Umuahia, are they election observers or monitors? Are they an extended arm of INEC? Nobody should listen to them.
“If they were given an impression of what happened in Abia State where they are staying or possibly doing their businesses, that would have been better. They should have asked Bishops; well-known Bishops, the recognized ones who are in Enugu what really happened. It is just like (God forbid) I, myself as the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Chairman of Enugu State inviting some clergymen and say let’s say whatever we feel like saying concerning what happened in may be Adamawa State or Kaduna State. What is the veracity? Is it based on what you heard or what you experienced? That is why I asked were they election observers or monitors or an extension of INEC? We don’t understand the basis and of course, I want to recognize that every individual or any group of people have the right to say what they want to say,” he said.
The revered and popular CAN Chairman further urged members of the public to disregard the statement purportedly issued by NEBN discrediting the Enugu governorship results as selective and politically motivated as it did not represent the state of affairs in the Coal City State.
According to him, “But, I want to prefer to say and advise the public not to regard that as anything. They are not in Enugu here and the worst is that you can’t even see the face of any of them.
“Yes, you can’t see their faces.
“I have already advised him (Enugu governor-elect) to accommodate all. And I want to say it categorically clear that the four candidates before the election were invited. We told them that if actually their individual interest was to serve the people of Enugu State, knowing that out of four of them, only one will win, because there is nothing, no magic, no miracle will cause two persons or the candidates of two parties to be announced as having won one election. It hasn’t been done and if it is done, it will not be acceptable.
“So, my advice to him (Peter Mbah) like I have done already is for him to accommodate all, carry every other person along. We are all brothers, we are all citizens. You have offered yourself to the people, what you are asking them is for mandate to be given that you are going to serve them. They should put their words into action by allowing peace to reign in Enugu State.”
The Chairman, who further stressed that aggrieved parties who had gone to court had the constitutional rights to seek redress where they feel their rights had been infringed upon, however, admonished them to allow the court to do its job and restrain from heating up the polity through their utterances and media activities.
“By extension, I want to say those who have gone to court haven’t committed any crime because instead of seeking for a way of killing and maiming, seeking a redress through the court is not a crime. After all, the Electoral Act made such provision that anyone who is aggrieved should go to court. But, in doing that, all I am asking is that you should not do anything that will jeopardize the peace, progress and the collective interest of the people of Enugu State.”
It would be recalled that the alleged NEBN had gone on air at Umuahia two weeks ago discrediting Enugu State governorship results and calling on INEC to recognize its Labour Party governorship candidate.