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Kwara CAN denies endorsing gov candidates


The Kwara State branch of the Christian Association of Nigeria has allegedly become divided over the endorsements of governorship candidates of two different political parties in the state by some of its members.

The crisis, which has divided the executive members of the association, has pitched two senior priests of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) against each other.

The state Publicity Secretary of CAN, Apostle Shina Ibiyemi, told The PUNCH that a group in the association met with the gubernatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Yaman Abdullahi, and gave him their support while another group of CAN met the state governor, Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, who is the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, and endorsed him as their candidate in the March 18, 2023 governorship/State Assembly elections.

Ibiyemi said that “The CAN executive did not take a position and we did not talk because we know that the two groups are Christians and they belong to different churches, we did not want to cause a division in CAN.”

However, the Archbishop of Kwara Province of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Most Rev Israel Amoo, said that the Church has dissociated itself from the purported endorsement of a governorship candidate and political party in the next Saturday gubernatorial/State Assembly election.

According to a statement personally signed by him, Amoo said, “The province comprising eight other respected Bishops that constituted the province wishes to dissociate themselves from the misleading and all ill calculated endorsement of Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq of Kwara State by CAN.

“That the purported endorsement was conceived, concerted and given birth to by a charlatan whose stock in trade is to denigrate CAN and its leadership by dragging it into partisan politics.

The statement noted that “there was no time that CAN as a body either clandestinely or overtly met to endorse the said party as a party of choice for the teeming Christian community in the state.”

Amoo said the endorsement meeting was a product of deceit veneered as a courtesy visit. He said CAN members who were invited were not aware of the evil intention of endorsement, and the press coverage was not a true reflection of what happened in the said meeting.

Furthermore, the governor had neither met nor requested an endorsement of the Christian community up-till that moment. Hence, the glitz of media endorsement by CAN was not only shocking but devilish and ungodly.

He, therefore, called on all members of the Church of Nigeria, in the province of Kwara Anglican Communion and all Spirit-filled Christians to disregard the misleading publication in its entirety and see that it does not accentuate the division of the body of Christ in the state.

“This abnormality will also come to pass,” the statement added.

Meanwhile, Rev Father Raph Ajewole, the Director of Ecumenical of CAN, has also described the posting of the purported endorsement on social media as ungodly, evil and satanic.

Speaking on a Radio Kwara programme monitored in Ilorin on Friday, Ajewole said that the purported CAN endorsement, which had generated arguments in the state, was false adding CAN has not been invited nor met with the Governor and has no problem or disagreement with anybody, state or group.

Ajewole said the association in the state has been praying for the governor, politicians, and state for peace and harmony to continue to reign in the state.

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