The Edo APC governorship candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu and his manifesto, the Simple Agenda on Monday secured the endorsement of the Coalition of Christian Leaders in Edo State.
The Coalition which is made up of Pastors of Christian organizations across denominations made public its endorsement in a communique signed by 14 eminent Church leaders at a special session in Benin City.
The signatories included that of Bishop Abraham Chigbundu of the Voice of Freedom Ministries, Pastor Dele Balogun, the Pastor in charge of Region 13 of the RCCG, Revd Jeff Iyonawan of Miracle Assembly and Bishop Iyobosa Atoe among others.
The special session featured prayers, praise and worship, an opening speech by Revd Jeff Iyonowan, an exhortation by Bishop Abraham Chigbundu comments by former deputy governor, Revd Peter Obadan, Barrister Emmanuel Usoh and other church leaders, culminating with the laying of hands and prayers for the victory of Pastor Ize-Iyamu.
According to the coalition, the Simple Agenda of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu is a, “plan for the developmental path of Edo state and her citizens”, hence their call on all Christians across Edo state notwithstanding denominations to, “vote massively for the candidate of the APC, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu and his running mate, Mallam Gani Audu”, in the Edo elections.
The coalition then called on parents and guardians in the state to help stem any participation of their children from any form of violence as it preaches nonviolence elections. It also called on the church and all religious leaders to continue in prayers for a peaceful election come September 19,2020.
In an exhortation, Bishop Chigbundu using scriptures to back up his submission declared that as far as the Edo governorship elections is concerned, for the Church leaders, understanding of the times and knowing what to do is key.
He said for too long the Church in Edo state has played too much to the gallery but now, “the Church in Edo state must understand the times we are in: an opportunity again has arisen for us and we ought to know what to do. This is not about politics, church, denomination. This is about the Kingdom”.
In his remarks, Revd Peter Obadan, a former deputy governor of Edo state said that the gathering was actually called so that Pastors present could take the message back by evangelising others whom they know and can reach but were absent about Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.
“Don’t go to your church. Go and tell the people that out brother is running; our brother is going to be governor of the state. This is what I want you to do….door to door evangelism and let every door post have POI”.
Obadan added, “If you live in Street A, cover the whole street. If your members cannot convert them to vote for POI, send your Pastors to go and convert them with words of wisdom. The Kingdom of God suffereth violence and only the violent taketh it by force”
Earlier in a welcome address, Revd Jeff Iyonawan of the Miracle Assembly said Christian leaders in the state opted to get actively involved in the Edo state governorship 2020 election because, “a politically disinterested and disengaged church is a disservice to the kingdom of God”.
The APC candidate apparently overwhelmed by the company of church leaders endorsing him and his manifesto said he was humbled especially as it was a repeat of what they did for him in 2016, when he first ran for Governor.
He commended Bishop Chigbundu, Revd Obadan and Pastor Dele Balogun, the Regional Pastor of region 13 of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, describing him as his father in the Lord for the ,”uncommon support he has given”, in mobilizing the church to support his governorship ambition.
Pastor Ize-Iyamu said it was good to know that, the church leaders realise that a christian be in the helm of affairs in Edo state as he commended them for understanding the times and seizing the opportunity because that politics is about power, influence and money
He then spoke briefly about his manifesto, the Simple Agenda, which details his plans upon assumption of office as Edo State Governor and said by the grace of God, “I want to assure church I will not disappoint you”.
He urged the church leaders to go back home and talk to their neighbors so that on September 19, 2020 they vote for somebody who is god-fearing, “somebody who has a clearcut agenda about what he wants to do. We are tired of fake promises”.
In conclusion, the APC candidate said that the only way, ” I can thank you is to do the will of God in government”, and ,”be your true representative in government” recalling how in the past he has been dependable as an appointee of government.#