President Goodluck Jonathan on Friday said he would be an advocate of peace in the country after leaving office.
The president said this when The Apostolic Church Nigeria, FCT Field, presented him with the “2015 Epitome of Peace Award’’ at the State House in Abuja.
Mr. Jonathan thanked the church for honouring him and said he would appreciate if more Nigerians would join him in advocating peace in the country.
“And one thing that I have decided to do after leaving office, is to make sure that I will be talking to all faithful of all religions, Christians, Muslims and other religions; the need for Nigerians to live in peace,” the president said.
“Because, when there is crisis in any part of the country, nobody can practice his own belief.
“When there is crisis anywhere, people cannot go to the mosque, you cannot go to the church.
“So we need peace in this country, no matter our religious persuasions, no matter our beliefs.
“And that will be one of my main commitments when I leave office.
“To reduce discrimination in this country based on religious divides or ethnicity.
“And I believe that I will have so many apostles to follow me to do that.”
The president said that so many people had done things to project and keep the nation together which had gone unnoticed.
According to him, his recognition and honour by the church is to encourage him to do more for Nigerians.
He said the church noticed him not because he was the president, but because of a little action he took to save lives.
He thanked the group for the memorabilia it gave to him and said he would keep them in his Presidential museum of library for posterity.
Earlier, the Superintendent of the Church, Apostle John Buzu, said the church chose the president for the award in recognition of his “outstanding leadership qualities, great strides, impactful contributions and laudable achievements’’.
Mr. Buzu said that Mr. Jonathan had proved to be an excellent leader and wonderful asset to the country.
“Our beloved president, you have distinguished yourself as a selfless servant leader with a large heart and a great sense of commitment towards the wellbeing, development, unity and progress of this nation.
“Your personal and leadership character have so endeared you to the hearts of well-meaning Nigerians and friends of the international community.
“We have collectively watched and observed you to be a humble leader with a simple and humane disposition to all manner of persons, irrespective of age, background, status, tribe, race or colour.
“You have exhibited a true servant-leader attitude with the willingness and readiness to always serve objectively at any level of responsibility and governance.
”You are a genuine and an icon of peace,” the clergyman said.
Mr. Buzu thanked Mr. Jonathan for expanding the political space in the country and expressed the hope that such legacy would be sustained. (NAN)
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