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Catholic bishops decry naira scarcity, tell Buhari to review CBN policy

Lucius Ugorji, president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) on Sunday urged President Muhammadu Buhari’s regime to review the new CBN cash policy to ease Nigerians’ hardships.

Mt Ugorji made the appeal at the opening of the 2023 First Plenary of CBCN held at the Catholic Secretariat in Abuja.

While expressing sadness over the situation, Mr Ugorji said the policy had resulted into debilitating cash crunch and frustration among Nigerians.

The CBCN president advised politicians to stop engaging in mudslinging, acrimony, arson, buying and selling of votes, threats, intimidation and violence ahead of the general elections.

Mr Ugorji said instead of dissipating energy on negativity, those aspiring for political offices should concentrate on marketing their manifestoes.

He also advised the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies to be above board and ensure that the election process is beyond reproach.

“The elections, if well conducted, can be a turning point in our political and economic history. We, therefore, urge all to play their roles maturely and creditably during the period of the general elections,” stated Mr Ugorji.

He added, “Any candidate who is prepared to shed blood or to spend huge sums of money to buy votes or to compromise INEC shows that he or she is seeking political office for pure self-aggrandisement.”

He reminded Catholics of their civic and moral responsibility of voting during elections.

The president of Christian Association of Nigeria, Daniel Okoh, commended the CBCN for always speaking truth to power.

Mr Okoh said CAN had registered with INEC to observe the forthcoming elections and had trained 1,200 observers.

He explained that the international observers from the All African Conference of Churches would also observe the elections.

“This will be our modest contribution in ensuring a free, fair and credible election in Nigeria this year,” the CAN president said.

The Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, Ignatius Kaigama, in his homily advised Nigerians to make informed choices during the elections.

“With our votes in the coming weeks, we can either choose a reasonable and productive use of power towards unity, security, a good economy or just abandon our fate in the hands of people who have neither capacity nor conscience,” Mr Kaigama said.


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