Don’t Elect Candidates Associated with Cult, Corruption: Christian Leaders in Nigeria

Members of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) with President Muhammadu Buhari. Credit: Presidency of Nigeria

Christian leaders in Nigeria have called on the people of God in the West African country to evaluate political candidates in the 2023 general elections so that politicians associated with “any cult”, corruption and any violent religious groups are not elected.

In a Tuesday, July 19 report, officials of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) urge the Nigerian electorate to vote on basis of a candidate’s competence,  character, policies and capacity. 

“The candidate must not be a member of any cult, must have no involvement in drugs and witchcraft, no fanaticism, no relationship to Boko Haram or other violent religious groups,” CAN officials say.

They add that a candidate “must have quality performance in previous positions, good education sufficient to manage a complex society, effective management of human and natural resources.”

CAN officials who include representatives of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) further say that those aspiring to be elected in 2023 “must have the ability to envision transformation, ability to communicate the vision to diverse peoples, ability to effectively effect the vision of transformation, must be in good health, sound mind and physical fitness for the job.”


Eligible voters in Nigeria will be going to the polls to elect their President, Vice President, members of the House of Representatives and Senate on 23 February 2023. 

The election of State governors has been slated for 11 March 2023.

In the July 19 report, CAN officials say the elective offices “must be shared fairly to every section of Nigeria."

"There must be equal ethnic and religious representation in military and security agencies," they say. 

To those who will be elected, CAN officials say there is need to ensure education and free healthcare is available to all Nigerians. 

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The Christian leaders also express their opposition to the Rural Grazing Area (RUGA) settlements, a policy that aims at curbing open grazing of animals. 

President Muhammadu Buhari proposed RUGA as a solution to curb conflicts between farmers and herders. 

“We say no to the RUGA settlement policy and yes to ranching. We reject open grazing, rather, there should be modernization of animal husbandry, local control of the local economy including waters, rivers and forests," CAN officials say, and add, "Everyone should control what we have."

Magdalene Kahiu is a Kenyan journalist with passion in Church communication. She holds a Degree in Social Communications from the Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA). Currently, she works as a journalist for ACI Africa.