The General Assembly of the Christian Association of Nigeria formally validated Archbishop Daniel Okoh’s election as its new President on Thursday, effectively ending the tenure of Dr. Samson Supo Ayokunle.
His selection by an electoral college, which was formed to screen and recommend candidates for the offices of President and Vice President, as presented by the blocs with nomination rights, was in accordance with the provisions of the 2021 CAN constitution as amended.
Okoh, the General Superintendent of Christ Holy Church International, Onitsha, emerged the new leader of CAN after getting a 100% votes of all 259 delegates who participated in its 12th General Assembly and he is expected to serve a single five-year term.
The new CAN President, in his acceptance speech, charged the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to tackle the rising insecurity in the country.
He said, “While thanking President Muhammadu Buhari for his efforts to combat terrorism and banditry, I would like to appeal to His Excellency to end the bloodletting, kidnapping, and general insecurity in all the geo-political zones of the country.
“I believe that the government can do more to secure lives and property given all the modern technology within its reach.”
According to him, the need for CAN to respond appropriately to national issues has become imperative.
He assured all that the apex Christian organisation would continue to participate actively and effectively in nation building
He said, “We are coming into a time when all of us in the Christian faith, believe that some sections of our political leaders are not sensitive to the diverse nature of our population when certain decisions are being made.
“Many Christians feel and have the genuine fear that there is a deliberate plan to remove the Christian faith from the scheme of things and make us second-class citizens in our own country—a genuine fear borne out of the recent happenings in our polity, i.e., the same-faith ticket in one of the major political parties in Nigeria, despite the caution raised by CAN two years ago.
“Whatever happens, no matter how many times our sensibilities are insulted, we must resolve to make a positive impact on the political, economic, and social systems of our dear nation.”
Nevertheless, Okoh stated that for Christians to remain relevant in the scheme of things, the first step was to increase CAN’s efforts to work towards Christian unity and mutual understanding among the denominations of the Church in Nigeria.
Ayokunle told his successor to love the people irrespective of their weaknesses.
He advised, “The people will annoy him, make him angry, and may not even appreciate him, but he must continue to seek the good of the people.”