The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) on Tuesday, August 7, 2018 issued a communique to ban all Catholic Clergy, Major Superiors of Institutes of Consecrated Life, and Lay faithful from publicly endorsing any candidate for political office. In an explicit press release, the CBCN stressed the Catholic Church’s apolitical nature especially with the tensed Nigeria’s political atmosphere.

 

The Nigeria political scene has seen a trend of key political figures switch alliance across varying political parties and urged their supporters to do same. Having observed all these happenings, the CBCN consequently declared that “no Catholic clergy or religious should publicly endorse any candidate for political office. Liturgical ceremonies must never be used as an opportunity for political campaigns. Similarly, ecclesiastical properties should not be used as places for support for any political candidate or party. All priests and religious should avoid giving the impression that the Church favors one candidate over another or one political party over another”.

 

Within the same proclamation, co-signed by Most Rev. Augustine AKUBEZE (President, CBCN) & Most Rev. Camillus UMOH (Secretary, CBCN), the Catholic Bishops’ Conference also claimed Nigeria is currently in distress and witnessing a difficult time in its history. Consequently, they went on to urge people of faith to work hard and pray for the future of the country. They also called on Catholics to recite the Prayer for Nigeria in Distress at all masses and other liturgical celebrations.

 

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria, CBCN, is the organ of unity, communion and solidarity for the millions of Catholics spread across the thirty-six states of Nigeria and the Federal Capital Territory. It is the forum wherein the collegiality of the Nigeria Catholic bishops, as successors of the Apostles in union with the Pope, is expressed and where the idea of the Church as family is signified.

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