FROM: PAUL ORUDE, BAUCHI
President, Conference of Catholic Bishops of Nigeria (CBCN), His Grace, Most Rev. Dr. Ignatius Kaigama, has cautioned those calling for division of the country to have a rethink, saying that such agitations were not healthy for the country.
Kaigama who is the Archbishop of Jos and Metropolitan of Jos Ecclesiastical Province, stressed that the unity of the country was sacrosanct.
He appealed to groups calling for the division of the country to jettison such ideas and rather join hands together with other groups to move the country forward.
The Archbishop stated this in a speech at the ordination of the new Bishop of the Bauchi Catholic Diocese, Rt. Rev. Hilary Nanman Dachelem, which held on Thursday at the Multipurpose Indoor Sports Hall, Bauchi State.
He said: “The call for secession by some groups in the country is unhealthy for Nigeria.
“We are better as a one united and indivisible nation. One group says ‘go’ and another group say ‘we want to go’. All these clamours are not healthy for us as one great United Nation.”
Kaigama appealed to both religious and political leaders irrespective of ethnic differences to come together, set aside every selfish interests and primordial sentiments for the unity if Nigeria.
He expressed confidence in the God-given leadership qualities of the widely-travelled new Bishop who speaks several Nigerian languages including Igbo to be a bridge builder.
“I believe he will use his wealth of experience to unite all Nigerians in the Diocese,” he said.
Bishop Dachelem, succeeded Late Bishop John Gotok, who died in March, 2015, as the 3rd Bishop of the Diocese
The inauguration attracted the presence of Papal Nuncio to Nigeria, Antonio Guildo, John Cardinal Oneyekan, 69 Bishops notably Bishop Matthew Kukah among several prominent personalities.
Other dignitaries include the Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong who was represented by the Commissioner for Lands, Survey and Town Planning, 1st civilian Governor of Bauchi State, Fidelis Tapgun, former deputy Governor of Plateau State, Pauline Tallen and many other dignitaries across the country.
Bishop Dachalem, appointed by Pope Francis on 31st May, 2017, was Parish Priest of Saint John Vianney Parish Kwande, Benue State.
In his inaugural speech, the new Bishop, thanked friends and faithful across the world who came to celebrate them promised to carry members of the Diocese irrespective of ethnic differences.