ABUJA – Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, the President of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), urged Nigerians to see Martin Luther King as a role model in fighting for a violence-free election.
He made the call in an interview with newsmen at the Selma Movie Premiere that took place at The Congress Hall, Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja.
He said “I am touched by what I have seen so far and I think it is a thing worth watching.
“When you hear of Martin Luther King Jnr., you are not hearing of an angel but a human being. A human being who could see and feel what others felt, and decided to do something about it.
“So if you want peace then you must be prepared to speak and say the truth at all times even when it is bitter.’’
He stressed the need for Nigerians to obtain their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) before the March 28 and April 11 general elections so as not to be disenfranchised.
The Director-General of the Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution, Prof. Oshita Oshita, also called for violence-free election and to draw lessons from the premiered movie: “Selma.’’
He describe the movie as a story based on the philosophy of non-violence epitomised in the actions of the legendary Martin Luther king Junior.
He said “Luther King was a great man that continued to impact our world through the social movement he inspired and led.
“The moral of Selma movie is not just in the historic match from Selma to Montgomeri but the non-violent nature of the match that made it a thing of international significance and respect despite brutalisation by law enforcement agents.
“The movie projects the fact that positive transformation could be achieved through non-violence.
“So this lesson is that Nigeria in 2015 general elections can achieve sustainable development through peaceful and non-violent democratic elections.’’
Prof. Jerry Gana, a scholar, a politician and former Minister of Information, who also gave a brief speech, said Nigerians should come together and say no to violence.
He also quoted a verse in the Bible Galatians 5:22 which he wished Nigerians would imbibe.
He said “the fruit of the spirit is love and joy and peace and patience and goodness and gentleness and self control.’’
He prayed that Nigerians would bear the fruit, have self control and collectively say no to violence.