Gov. Biodun Oyebanji of Ekiti has advocated for greater involvement of Christians in partisan politics as a way of deepening democracy and development in the country.
Mr Oyebanji made the advocacy at his office on Thursday in Ado-Ekiti while receiving the general overseer of Foursquare Gospel Church, Rev. Sam Aboyeji and his wife, Olabisi.
The governor said more inclusive political landscape would enhance policies that could better reflect the concerns of Nigerians.
According to him, a good number of Christians who can add value to the system would rather prefer to stay out of politics because of their belief that politics is a dirty game, meant for a certain group of people.
“Sadly, those who avoid politics are not immune from the effects of bad policies.
“Rather than see politics as a dirty game, Christians should consider it as a viable opportunity to contribute to nation-building, make positive impacts on the society and promote the values that align with God,” he said.
The governor further stated that participation of more Christians in politics would provide moral leadership, promote honesty, integrity and ethical behaviour among elected officials and be a voice for right decision-making and accountability in governance.
While urging ministers of God and churches in general to play pivotal roles in inspiring and educating their congregation about the importance of civic participation, the governor urged the cleric not to relent in praying for more development in the state and the country in general.
“Most Christians don’t want to come near politics, but the Bible says when the righteous is in authority, the people rejoice.
“And to get to authority in Nigeria, you have to be involved in politics; there must be a path to getting to it and the only path we have now is through political office or appointment.
“So we should continue to pray and encourage Christians to participate in politics,” Mr Oyebanji said.
Earlier, the general overseer, who appreciated the governor for receiving him and his team despite his busy schedule, commended his leadership style.
“You’re representing God very well in governance,” he remarked.
Mr Aboyeji said that the visit was to intimate Mr Oyebanji about the activities of the church in the state, particularly the newly established branch and skill acquisition centre.
He said that the visit was also aimed at praying and pronouncing divine blessings on the state.
According to him, God’s hands is upon the state, as evident in the level of peace and development being enjoyed.
Present at the occasion were commissioner for budget, Niyi Adebayo; commissioner for information, Taiwo Olatunbosun and special adviser to the governor on media, Yinka Oyebode.