Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has argued that, contrary to divisive claims based on ethno-religious sentiments, Nigeria’s challenge was neither ethnic nor religious.
He pointed at corruption perpetrated by unpatriotic people as the source of the unfortunate state of the nation.
Osinbajo also criticised religious leaders for failing to support the Federal Government’s anti-corruption war by not preaching against the menace.
Speaking at the 30th National Biennial Conference of the Students Christian Movement of Nigeria holding in Enugu, Osinbajo noted that preachers were preoccupied with preaching prosperity rather than righteousness.
“Very rarely do you hear our preachers talk about corruption from their pulpits. If a nation is not righteous nothing will help it.”
Osinbajo said that corruption had been so entrenched in the country that if you dare challenge it, you will be in the minority.
He challenged the youths to change the narrative and make the difference by opposing the impunity of those that had stolen the resources of the country.
“Our problem in this country is not ethnicity or religion; it is not about Christians or Muslims. Our problems are the same wherever you go in this country.
“The story of our country is about good and evil. It is about those that have left us in this condition by stealing our common resources.
“Do not let anyone deceive you.”
The acting president challenged members of SCM to ensure that the movement becomes one of the tools that will move the country forward.
“You should understand that our country can be delivered by people like you.”
According to him, young Christians have special and distinct roles to play in the transformation of the country which is superior to those of other sets of people.
“All of the great nations of the world were transformed by the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is not a gospel that tickles people’s imaginations or dwells on prosperity.
“It is not a gospel that fits your fancy. It is a gospel that teaches that righteousness exalts a nation.
Osibanjo appealed to Nigerians to stand against the looting of the nation’s resources, as well as support the anti-corruption initiative of the Federal Government, irrespective of party affiliations.
Earlier in his address, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State commended the organisers of the event for a successful convention.
Ugwuanyi said that Christians needed such events in order to seek spiritual reformation, considering the situation in the world.
He said that Christians also needed to contribute to the promotion of good living among Nigerians.
Ugwuanyi urged Nigerians to continue to pray for President Muhammadu Buhari and for the peace of the nation.
In an address of welcome, the National President of SCM, Rev. Eric Ighalo, commended Osinbajo for honouring their invitation.
Ighalo said that the conference was about active involvement of youths in reversing the problems that had held the country down through dialogue, collaboration and contention.