The Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, hailed the country on its 63rd Independence Day anniversary on Sunday, calling on the Federal Government to fix the economy.
According to the group, the recent drop in the value of the naira versus major world currencies, particularly the dollar, has had a significant impact on Nigerians.
Archbishop Daniel Okoh, President of the CAN, mentioned these in his Independence Day message.
He also suggested that the federal government do more to tackle terrorism and banditry in Nigeria.
He said, “This significant milestone reminds us of the progress we have made as a nation and the challenges that lie ahead. As we reflect on our journey, we urge the government to prioritize addressing the pressing economic challenges and the escalating state of insecurity in our beloved country.
“CAN acknowledges the need for urgent measures to stabilize the Nigerian economy. The recent fall of the naira against major world currencies, particularly the dollar, has had a profound impact on the lives of ordinary Nigerians.
“We call on the government to implement sustainable economic policies that will bolster our local currency, stimulate investments, and revitalize key sectors.”
The statement read further: “By fostering an enabling environment for entrepreneurship and providing necessary support to small and medium-sized enterprises, we can create jobs and alleviate poverty, ultimately improving the quality of life for all citizens.
“Moreover, the escalating state of insecurity, especially in the Southeast region, demands immediate attention. We express deep concern over the spate of violence and bloodshed that has plagued communities, leading to the loss of lives and displacement of innocent citizens.”
The Christian body urged the “government to intensify efforts in combating terrorism, banditry, and all forms of criminal activities.”
It was also recommended that enough resources be committed to security services as well as participation with local populations.
It was highlighted that intelligence gathering must be improved in the fight against terrorism.
“Restoring peace and security is vital not only for the affected regions but for the entire nation, as it will enable people to return to their farms, fostering food security and sustainable development.
“Furthermore, we emphasize the need for unity and national cohesion. Nigeria’s strength lies in its diversity, and we must harness this diversity for the common good of all citizens. Together, we can build bridges of understanding and foster an environment where all citizens feel valued and protected.”
CAN encourages the government to prioritize quality education and healthcare, which are “fundamental rights that must be guaranteed to every Nigerian. By investing in these critical sectors, we empower our youth with knowledge and skills and ensure the well-being of our citizens, particularly the vulnerable.”
Okoh stated that CAN was aware of the ongoing fuel subsidy negotiations between the Federal Government and labour unions.
He urged all parties to reach a compromise that minimizes the impact on disadvantaged Nigerians.
Okoh said, “The removal of subsidy is a significant economic adjustment with far-reaching consequences. We understand the government’s reasons but acknowledge the resulting distress and hardship.”
“In conclusion, as we celebrate Nigeria’s 63rd Independence anniversary, let us not forget the challenges that confront us.
“CAN remains committed to promoting initiatives towards a prosperous and peaceful Nigeria. By doing so, we can achieve sustainable development, foster peace, and create a nation where every Nigerian can thrive,” he said.