President Goodluck Jonathan again on Sunday carpeted some unnamed senior citizens in the country who he said were fond of making provocative statements capable of promoting violence.
He urged the elders to emulate fallen members of the nation’s Armed Forces who he said paid the supreme price to keep the nation together.
Jonathan spoke at an inter-denominational church service organised as part of activities to mark the 2014 Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebration held at the National Christian Centre, Abuja.
The President said he was more concerned about the statements of the senior citizens because he expected that by virtue of their age, they must have seen enough to convince them that the country’s unity was more important than their personal interests.
He reiterated his position that he would never expect anybody to spill his or her blood because of his (Jonathan’s) political ambition.
He told politicians to be aware that there would be no nation when they promoted violence and killings for political reasons, adding that nobody would come out to vote for them at the poll.
The President said, “Sometimes I get worried when I listen to provocative statements that come from very senior citizens. People that ordinarily you perceive are very senior citizens. People who are probably 70 or 80 years who have seen it all and who ordinarily should know the unity of this country is more important than the interest of any individual.
“Sometimes they preach hate and even encourage young people to carry arms and kill themselves.
“I have always said it that any ambition I have at any time is not worth the blood of any Nigerian. I will never ever expect a Nigerian to spill a drop of his blood because Goodluck Jonathan must fulfill his ambition.”
On the insecurity in parts of the country, Jonathan said the situation could have degenerated beyond the current level if not for Nigerians’ daily prayers.
Archbishop of Methodist Church, Abuja, Most Rev. Job Oche, in his sermon, urged politicians to give peace a chance.
Oche said inflammatory statements credited to politicians ahead of the 2015 general elections would not do the country any good.
He said unless such statements that cause fear among the citizens were stopped forthwith, Nigerians might had no choice but to stay away from polling units during the election.
He urged them to forgo their political ambition of 2015 for now as tomorrow would take care of itself.
“Politicians should leave 2015 (elections) alone, God knows what he will do with 2015. We agree that politicians’ ambitions know no father, but God said we should leave the problem of tomorrow for tomorrow because today’s problems are enough. Stop destroying one another because of ambition,” he said.