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Ugwuanyi, Diri, Abiodun salute Christians at Christmas


By Simon Utebor, Yenagoa and Ernest Nwokolo, Abeokuta

Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State and his counterparts in Bayelsa and Ogun states, Douye Diri and Dapo Abiodun, on Friday saluted Christians on the celebration of Christmas.

They also assured them of better days ahead of the various challenges the country is facing at the moment.

In his Christmas message, Governor Ugwuanyi called on Nigerians to seize the opportunity offered by Christmas to offer prayers for God’s divine intervention and abiding grace for the nation to surmount its various challenges, including the COVID-19 pandemic and the second economic recession in five years.

The governor urged the people of Enugu State and Nigerians in general not to lose faith in God in the face of adversity, but to remain committed to the Good News that Jesus Christ was born to bring salvation to mankind.

He stressed that the Yuletide offers Nigerians the opportunity to reflect soberly, pray for the country and her leaders, as well as engage in activities that promote peace, unity, security and progress.

While thanking ‘Ndi Enugu’ for their love, goodwill, solidarity, support and unceasing prayers, Governor Ugwuanyi reassured them of his firm resolve to sustain the tempo of peace and good governance in the state as well as to continue to serve them with the fear of God.

Diri to Bayelsans: don’t despair, better days are ahead

Governor Douye Diri yesterday charged citizens and residents of the state not to be discouraged by the effects of COVID-19 and the attendant economic challenges.

Diri, in his Christmas message to the people of the state, expressed optimism that despite the challenges of the moment, there are better days ahead.

He urged the people to reflect on the message of the birth of Jesus, which is about love, peace and hope.

He said: “For a world in need of healing and encouragement, the entire Christmas story is a harbinger of love, peace and hope.

“Bayelsa State, like much of the world, is also facing demanding times. But God has kept us through this difficult situation and season.

“More than at any other time, as we commemorate the birth of Jesus, we ought to take a moment to reflect and appreciate the fact that there is still hope of good tidings ahead of us as a people and as a state.”

The governor noted that despite the disruptions and hardship during the year, the promise of prosperity for everyone in Bayelsa still endures.

“Indeed, the prosperity of Bayelsa State is not negotiable,” he assured the state.

Diri also stated that for Bayelsa, this should be a season of gratitude and thanksgiving considering the gloom in the state at this time a year ago.

He added: “We have much to be thankful for. The effect of the COVID-19 pandemic was relatively mild in our state.

“The peace and security paradigm has significantly improved and we just had an incident-free senatorial by-election devoid of bloodletting. That is why I am fully persuaded that better days are ahead of us.

“Life will return to normal, and by this time next year when we congregate again to enjoy the festivities with our loved ones, things would have improved.

“I am confident that the Lord will keep us all till then.”

Abiodun urges Nigerians to be appreciative, restates commitment to even development in Ogun

Governor Dapo Abiodun on Christmas Day restated his commitment to giving all parts of Ogun State equal attention, adding that his administration has recorded moderate achievements in the areas of infrastructure, youth empowerment and employment generation.

The governor identified education, agriculture and social well-being of the people as other areas where he had also made positive marks.

He urged indigenes and residents of the state as well as Nigerians to show gratitude to God for witnessing another Christmas despite the turbulence associated with Year 2020.

The governor, who gave his homilies at the Christmas service held at St. James Anglican Church, Remo Diocese, Iperu, said although the year started with hopes and aspirations, it ended as an unusual and challenging one.

He said: “We have every cause to thank God for making us to see this Christmas. This year is an unusual and challenging year despite the fact that it started with hopes and aspirations.

“I am sure you have been seeing our people going round to repair and reconstruct roads here in Iperu, Ilishan, Sagamu, Ijebu-North and Ijebu-Ode.

“They are also working in Abeokuta, Ilaro, Ifo, Ota, Ipokia and Imeko. They are working to ensure that we have motorable roads in our state.”

He maintained that despite the negative effects of Covid-19 pandemic and the EndSARS protests that disrupted socio-economic activities in the state, his administration remained undaunted, resulting in the state being adjudged the best in education, agriculture, housing and information and communication technology (ICT).

He also urged the people to be responsible while celebrating Christmas as it was the period of peace.

Abiodun further enjoined them to continue to observe the Covid-19 protocols in order to contain the second wave of the pandemic which, according to him, is deadlier than the first.

In his Christmas message, Venerable Samuel Ajileye, who stated that the birth of Jesus Christ signifies love and selflessness, charged Christians to show love to fellow humans.



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