Presidential election: Clerics declare stand as Adeboye, Oyedepo, others keep mum
Twenty-four hours to the Presidential election, some eminent pastors and prophets in Nigeria have kept sealed lips.
The Entertainment Reporter reports that a total of 93.5 million Nigerians who registered to vote in the coming election are expected to choose from 18 candidates on Saturday, February 25, 2023, according to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
The major contenders in the much-awaited election are the All Progressives Congress, APC, candidate, Bola Tinubu, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, candidate, Atiku Abubakar, and the Labour Party candidate, Peter Obi.
Although the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has been vocal over the choice of party candidates and their running mates, the body has been unable to unanimously endorse a candidate.
Recall that the Christian body had kicked against the decision of the ruling party to field a Muslim-Muslim ticket for the 2023 poll, lamenting how the party neglected the Northern Christians.
Meanwhile, some Nigerian pastors, who prophesied President Muhammadu Buhari and Yemi Osinbajo’s victory in 2015 and 2019, have been quiet about who should be Nigeria’s next president.
Recall that in 2015, Pastor Tunde Bakare, Rev. Fr. Ejike Mbaka and Pastor Sunday Adelaja had supported the candidacy of President Muhammadu Buhari and Prof Yemi Osinbajo.
Although the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, had in 2015 debunked reports that he endorsed any candidate, prayers were held for Osinbajo at the church and he was admonished to remain a good ambassador of the church while in office.
In 2017, Osinbajo who is a spiritual son to Adeboye, had revealed that it was Adeboye, one of the most influential people in the world that gave him the permission to accept Buhari’s offer to be his running mate in 2015.
However, there is one day left until the February 25 presidential poll and Adeboye, who advised Nigerians to get their Permanent Voter Card, PVC, ready, stated that he may guide them on who to vote for if God reveals the winner to him before the polls. He has, however, shied away from the matter.
The cleric during the RCCG monthly Holy Ghost Service at the church’s international headquarters, in January, had also warned Nigerians against believing anyone prophesying the possible winner of the 2023 elections.
According to him, the person was lying because God has not spoken on that.
Adeboye, is however, one of the pastors in the country who have severally kicked against some of the policies of the Buhari-led administration.
Another pastor who has fiercely criticised the current administration and is yet to endorse a candidate for the Saturday election is Bishop David Oyedepo, General Overseer of Living Faith Church.
The renowned man of God had on Sunday urged Nigerians to vote wisely during the 2023 elections and cautioned politicians that Nigeria is not a property for sale.
He called on the electorates to vote for a leader who has capacity and character.
Here are some pastors who have endorsed their candidates.
Apostle Johnson Suleman
Apostle Johnson Suleman, Founder of Omega Fire Ministries, on Sunday announced that he and his family would be voting for the Labour Party Presidential Candidate, Peter Obi.
Suleman also cautioned Nigerians against voting for candidates linked to terrorism, tribalism, and bigotry in the country.
Pastor Paul Enenche
Pastor Paul Enenche, Senior pastor of Dunamis International Gospel Centre, on Sunday, declared Peter Obi as his preferred candidate in Saturday’s election.
Speaking during a sermon, Enenche asked Nigerians to support Peter Obi for integrity, authenticity and honesty.
Although he didn’t mention any name, the famous clergy urged his members to vote for the third person in the race who, according to him, has the capacity to deliver the country from its current woes.
He urged Nigerians not to vote for candidates from the two major political parties, APC and PDP.
In a follow up post on Twitter page, the clergyman shared a picture of Peter Obi and asked Nigerians to vote for him for his credibility in the upcoming election.
Popular Onitsha-based pastor, Chukwuemeka Odumeje, has in 2022 endorsed Peter Obi.
The cleric, who has been supporting the LP candidate, said whatever Lagos State is today is as a result of the investment of igbo people living and doing business there.
According to him, Atiku and Tinubu do not have plans for Nigeria and only Peter Obi can bring a dead country back to life.
Chris Oyakhilome, General Overseer of Christ Embassy, had last week dropped a clue that his preferred presidential candidate is Peter Obi.
Oyakhilome told his members that God revealed to him that the name of Nigeria’s next president is in the holy Bible.
Although he mentioned no name, Peter is a name in the Bible.