President Muhammadu Buhari has sent a felicitation message to Christians on Easter celebrations and with the assurance of his commitment to security, peace, unity and development.
In pursuit of security, he assured the nation of his commitment to rescue all girls abducted by Boko Haram, including the remaining Chibok schoolgirls.
“I am very optimistic that all others, including the Chibok girls who are still in captivity will be safely released unconditionally to their families,’’ Buhari said in the message.
While urging Christians to to continue to pray for the safe return of the girls, he said that he had given clear instructions to security agencies to prioritise safety in schools.
Security, he said, would be extended also to areas where the humanitarian and security situation are still dire, in addition to ensuring adequate protection of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
He also appealed to politicians and other acltors to resist any act that could mar the integrity of the electoral system as the nation march to another election year in 2019.
“I am optimistic that with God on our side, the dark days of Nigeria’s elections being manipulated by violence and rigging by corrupt politicians and their agents are over.
“They are confined to the dustbin of history where they rightly belong. I remain committed to bequeathing a legacy of supremacy of the people’s will through the ballot box.’’
Expressing his delighted to join Christians to commemorate the Easter celebrations, he said it was time to show love, forgiveness, compassion and renewed hope in the Grace of God.
“The Holy Scripture affirms that happiness and fulfilment in life do not flow from acquiring the best things in life, but in being richer in a relationship with God and fellow human beings.
“Let us use the opportunity of this special season to deeply reflect on how every one of us can imbibe the profound teachings of Jesus Christ with renewed vigour.
“In so doing and by placing the joy, comfort and happiness of others above ours, we will make a statement that vices such as, hate speech, bigotry, corruption, banditry and terrorism have no place in our nation.’’
He advised Nigerians to do all it takes to love their neighbours and display increased spirit of tolerance and accommodation.
While enjoining law-abiding fellow compatriots to work for peace and social justice, he said: “Let there be no doubt of our resolve to firmly resist others who may want to make cheap political capital out of current national security challenges.’’
He said that the programme of the government in the last three years have resulted in bringing down the prices of staple crops; gradual improvement of road, rail and electricity infrastructure; and making Nigeria the preferred destination for investors.
“More than ever before, we are ready to consolidate on these gains and ensure that we improve the lot of our communities in the years ahead.’’
“May this year’s Easter celebrations bring us renewed hope and confidence as a great nation.’’