By Stanley Onyekwere
As Christians in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) celebrate Christmas today, they have been implored used the joyous occasion to pray for peace, security and economic prosperity across the Territory.
This charge was given by FCT Minister Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, and Minister of state for FCT, Dr. Ramatu Tijjani Aliyu in their separate warm felicitations sent to FCT residents especially the Christian faithful celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.
In particular, Bello in his message urged them to imbibe the virtues aof humility, courage, honesty and love for one another which Jesus Christ epitomises.
While asking that supplications be made to God for the good health and wisdom of leaders at all levels of government, the Minister called for peaceful co-existence and harmonious living amongst all those who have made the FCT their home.
He reiterated them that the FCT is the symbol of Nigeria’s unity, hence all residents had a duty to reflect that symbol by eschewing all factors that tend to divide them and instead embrace those that unite.
According to him, the FCT Administration always puts the wellbeing of all residents as the focus of its developmental agenda and solicited the cooperation and support of residents for the success of all government programmes.
He expressed the appreciation of the FCT Administration to residents for their understanding and cooperation as the government implements the safe, functional and efficient traffic management policy in Abuja.
Bello disclosed that efforts were being made to reposition the public transportation system in the Territory to better serve residents as discussions were on going with private public transport operators to provide affordable and efficient transportation services.
The Minister also assured residents that arrangements have been made by the relevant agencies for the provision of adequate security during the Christmas holidays.
While wishing all FCT residents a very merry Christmas and a prosperous 2020, the Minister urged them to always obey all extant rules, especially traffic regulations, as well as observing the ban on the use of fireworks.
On her part, the FCT Minister of State, noted that the call for prayer has become necessary in view of the numerous challenges facing the country, and added that Christians should emulate the exemplary life of Jesus Christ who started his mission with prayer and ended in prayer.
“I call on residents of the territory to use the occasion of Christmas to pray for unity, peace and progress of the nation.
“Besides the funfair that characterized the occasion, it is also an opportunity for sober reflection and to emulate the exemplary life of Jesus Christ.
“I also call on FCT residents to use this spiritual occasion to pray for President Muhammadu Buhari, as the Bible teaches to pray for those in authority.
“Prayer is key because Jesus Christ started his mission with prayer and ended with prayer,” she stated.