Nigeria Needs Leaders Who Can Manage Cultural, Religious Diversity “very well”: Archbishop

Archbishop Matthew Man-Oso Ndagoso of Kaduna Archdiocese in Nigeria. Credit: Courtesy Photo

Nigeria is in need of leaders capable of managing “very well” the cultural and religious diversity of citizens, the Catholic Archbishop of the country’s Kaduna Archdiocese has said. 

In a Tuesday, November 22 report, Archbishop Matthew Man-Oso Ndagoso says the West African nation’s diverse cultures and religious affiliations is “a blessing from God”.

“Nigeria is a very diverse country; we all come from different cultural and religious backgrounds and our diversity is not a curse but a blessing from God,” Archbishop Ndagoso says.

He adds, “We need leaders who can be able to manage our diversity very well. Therefore, if our cultural and religious backgrounds should be properly managed, it will enrich our country.” 

The Nigerian Archbishop says that it is regrettable that the West African nation currently has leaders who “are so nepotistic” and do not value the cultural and religious diversity. 


In his considered view, the lack of attentiveness to the diverse culture and religions in Africa’s most populous nation is behind the “agitation for self-determination.”

“If any candidate or political party dismisses other people’s sensitivity, I think they are sending a message to them,” says the 62-year-old Archbishop who started his Episcopal Ministry in May 2003 as Bishop of Nigeria’s Maiduguri Diocese.

In the report, Archbishop Ndagoso further says that the challenges, which Nigerians have been experiencing since 2015 stem from leaders who refuse to embrace diversity, and urges the electorate to vote for political candidates who are mindful of the country’s diversity during the 25 February 2023 general elections.

“Any candidate who does not care about our religious sensitivity, why should we vote the person into power? It is a waste of votes,” the Catholic Church leader who has been at the helm of Kaduna Archdiocese since November 2007 has been quoted as saying. 

He adds that political candidates vying for leadership in the West African nation “must give every Nigerian a sense of belonging and what is happening now is not giving every Nigerian a sense of belonging.”

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In the report, the Local Ordinary of Kaduna Archdiocese also laments the economic hardships in the country, saying, “Many Nigerians barely eat two square meals a day.”

Archbishop Ndagoso also urges the Muhammadu Buhari-led government to address the challenge of insecurity in the country. 

Silas Mwale Isenjia is a Kenyan journalist with a great zeal and interest for Catholic Church related communication. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communication from Moi University in Kenya. Silas has vast experience in the Media production industry. He currently works as a Journalist for ACI Africa.