The President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Rev Dr Samson Olasupo Ayokunle, has been re-elected for another term of three years in office. On Tuesday, he defeated Elder Dr Caleb Ahima, who now becomes Vice President for the umbrella body for Christians.
According to the report of the election conducted by Rev. Fr. Dr Hassan Kukah-led electoral committee, Ayokunle scored 59 while Ahima scored 44.
Ayokunle is the President of the Nigerian Baptist Convention while Ahima is the Chairman of the TEKAN/ECWA block in CAN. Ahima, according to the Constitution of CAN now becomes the Vice President . He replaces the immediate past Vice President, Elder Prof Joseph Otubu.
Kukah charged the new leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria to work for the unity of the Body of Christ in Nigeria and to speak truth to power without necessarily being antagonistic towards the government.
“You should not be too close to the government at the expense of Church but to speak for the church when the need arises. This does not mean you are to be confrontational or fighting the government. And you should work with those who contested against you, those who voted for you, who worked for you and those who worked against you. God gives us the freedom of choice and it is that gift we have just demonstrated. I am so happy that the election was free and fair as we can all see it.”
In his remark, Ayokunle promised to continue carrying the leadership of CAN along in all his actions and to work together with his new deputy. He charged the Church leaders in the country to avoid contradicting the position of the Association on national issues.
“We are one but our actions must show that we are one. I advised all our leaders to borrow a leaf from Pastor Enoch Adeboye who said he does not need to be speaking again on any issue once the CAN President has spoken over it.”
In his own remarks, Elder Ahima pledged to work harmoniously with Dr Ayokunle on how to speak for the Church in the country at times like these.
The 104 members of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the members constituted the voters who participated in the exercise.