Nigeria has had a fair share of religious crisis, resulting from the extremism of the mind in an unending misdirection of vigor.
Religious fanaticism has been a ready tool in the hands of leaders to divide the people and distract them from the main issues of development and commitment to their social contract, leading to needless and senseless loss of lives and property.
But a leader has chosen to be different and I shall be using this piece to highlight and screenshot graphically, the Jesus in Yahaya Bello.
Though a devout Muslim, Yahaya Bello holds the ideal of the freedom of religion. To him, religion is a personal relationship between man and God. He deals with fairness, equality, tolerance and forgiveness.
At the peak of Sen. Dino Melaye’s disagreement with the Governor, he told a few of us that he won’t fight the Senator. He said he was ready to forgive him for all he said about him. He forgives effortlessly to prove it is an attitude of his.
In the administration of the State, fairness has been his watchword. The peace enjoyed in Kogi and the unity that has come to define the state, were woven around the Governor’s sense of fairness. Those were the things Jesus lived for. Discrimination, when pregnant, delivers violence and distrust, the twin enemies of peace.
He is a servant
Jesus was regarded as the son of God. He is the Messiah of the world. But when his traducers wanted to arrest Him, they needed someone to kiss his forehead in order to give him up. He wasn’t bossy. That has been the spirit of Yahaya Bello. He sits to eat with his aides. He discusses freely with the people he appointed. He mixes with the commoners. The Councillor representing him in his Ward is a SPECIAL BEING, A PERSON OF ABILITIES. He doesn’t discriminate. He turns himself to a servant.
Respect for Other Religions
For 28 years, the seat of power in Kogi, the Lugard House had no Chapel. Even with Christian Administrators pre-1999, no Chapel was built there.
It took a Yahaya Bello to build a place for Christian worship. I remembered the CAN President, Dr Supo Ayokunle said God will rain blessings on Yahaya Bello.
You can’t build a house for God and not be heralded by God. It was a massive one and reassuring to the Christian community in the State that they do not need a Paul in Lugard House before their interests could be met.
When you look at his appointments, it is crystal clear. The Deputy Governor is a Christian. The SSG is a Christian. His ADC is a Christian. Many of his aides are Christians.
The message here is that he will never reject anyone on the basis of religion. He is like rainfall. He touches every roof.
An Apostle of Truth
Jesus was hated for standing by the truth. Hatred for truth is as old as truth. Jesus’ message was not popular. But it was the truth. GYB has also cultivated the same virtue. His views on Covid-19 was condemned, criticised and hotly rejected by the promoters of the PLANDEMIC. But he stood his ground. He faced the criticisms. He was focused. And today, what started in Lokoja is becoming a global fact.
Leadership is not always going to be about a position; an ideology without focused leadership is bound to die. Yahaya Bello has emerged as the leader of an ideological revolution of protecting the people and not the pockets of a few.
Jesus became a universal factor because apart from His status as the saviour of the world; His love for all united the world. Yahaya Bello is the centre of harmony. A hitherto divided state became a united front.
As Christians, we owe the world a responsibility to show the Christ in us which is the hope of glory. If a Yahaya could showcase that effortlessly, we shouldn’t struggle to do same.
Merry Christmas to all Christians around the World. Where is the Jesus in you?
Kingsley Fanwo is the Kogi State Commissioner for Information and Communications. He writes in from Lokoja.
Vanguard News Nigeria