A Nigerian cleric has shockingly advised those who are interested in politics to be prepared to steal ballot boxes as the country prepares for general elections in 2023.
The cleric, Abel Damina, premised his advice on an argument that there is no fairness and justice in politics anywhere in the world, including the U.S.
“Somebody said they are rigging elections. There’s no government that doesn’t rig elections, including America. That is the way the system works. It is survival,” Mr Damina, the pastor of Power City International, Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, says in a video clip circulating on social media.
“So if you are thinking of politics, start thinking of contending as a (a means of) survival. So they are stealing ballot box, steal your own. That’s the way the system works. It means all of us are thieves – steal, I steal. The man that steal pass becomes governor.”
The congregants laughed out loud over Mr Damina’s comment as captured in the clip.
The clip is undated but it is clear the pastor was speaking inside his church situated in the heart of Uyo.
The clip may, however, be viewed as being recent because of the current political situation in Akwa Ibom State where Governor Udom Emmanuel hand-picked his preferred successor for the 2023 governorship election, claiming that he had a revelation from God about his choice of the Commissioner for Lands and Water Resources, Umo Eno.
The pastor, quoting a Bible portion (1 Samuel 8: 5 – 18) to back his claim, said God does not get involved in politics and governance.
Democracy, according to him, “is a system of imperfection run by imperfect people and ends with imperfect people”.
“If a man of God tells you you’ll be governor, it is a lie. God doesn’t get involved in these things. It is people that are not taught that fall for those soothsaying.
“We are men of God, we have no business prophesying over politicians. No, that’s not our calling, our calling is to perfect you (the congregants), to strengthen you, to teach you so you can mature in Christ and if you have any circular conviction we wish you well. Go there and do your best,” he said.
“If you come to me and tell me you want to be a governor, I will tell you I wish you well and God bless you because I don’t know what you have set on ground.
“You’ll be a fool if you didn’t set anything and come and say the Lord says I will be governor. You’ll be a fool because the government doesn’t happen overnight, you must have a structure that spans across all the polling booths with young men and foot soldiers that are ready to die for you because they think people must be ready to die.
“If you don’t have that kind of thing just stay in your corner, look for one small business and be happy with Jesus. And then when they finish the election, you (can) apply for a job,” he said.
Mr Damina is not new to controversial remarks. In 2017, the pastor preached against Christians giving money to churches and in turn expecting God to bless them with riches.
“God does not multiply your money. What multiplies your money is work,” Mr Damina had said.
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