By Mathew Dadiya
National Women Wing of Christian Association of Nigeria (WOWICAN), has honoured foreign diplomat, minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), military chief, senator amongst 21 prominent personalities for their contribution to human development, peace and goodwill in Nigeria.
The award was given at the fifth WOWICAN National Convention with the theme: “My Peace I Give Unto You Not As The World Giveth…”, held on Saturday at the Apostolic Church Nigeria, Area 1, Garki Abuja.
The Italian Ambassador to Nigeria, Stefano De Leo who was presented with the Good Will Ambassador award for his humanitarian support to people in Nigeria, lauded the women for the award, urging them to keep sustaining their prayers and support for a peaceful nation.
Former Chief of Defence Staff, Gen Martin Luther Agwai; Senator Sunday Marshal Katung; Apostle Samson Adetunji Fatokun (CAN General Secretary); Bishop David Ibiyeomie, founder/resident Pastor of Salvation Ministries, and Rev Mother Esther Abimbola Ajayi.
Other awardees include Pastor Moses Olusoji Oyewole; Dr Paul Omotayo Omokore; Kaduna State former First Lady, Dame Elizabeth Amina Yakowa; Elder Benjamin Ayodele Omofade; Elder Umoh Edet Okon; Dr Mabel Oyindasola Sowoolu; Dr Kehinde Adesoye Abiola; Dr Comfort Adu; Rev Benjamin Mamman; and Elder Akinbode Olaoluwa David.
The National Chairperson of WOWICAN, Ambassador Victoria Bolaihesiulor, said they have organised a total of four national conventions, and this makes it it the fifth for peace and unity of the country.
Stefano De Leo, the Italian Ambassador to Nigeria, Described tje award as a very important award.
According to Amb Leo, we diplomats usually interact with the governments which is our job and we do it here in Nigeria in a very perfect way but we need also to go to civil society to understand people because we have also to connected to people’s Italy in my case, and Nigeria but also European Union and Nigeria so we can understand and work even better.
He said, the Good Will Ambassador award, ” it is a very important gift for me, a very important day for me. I was honored together with his Excellency, the Minister of FCT, with whom we work already together. So these are commitments to be always ready to support the needs of Nigeria and to build together a future of a country which is blessed by God.”
“So this is our commitment and I feel very honored that today. I was given this award because this gives me more energy to start even more initiatives, together with your people, with your authorities to look forward for a bright future for all of us in Nigeria.
Nigeria cannot miss in this balance because you are the most populous country in Africa, you are the powerhouse of this continent, without you (Nigeria) nothing can happen.
“So if your dialogue with Africa, you have to dialogue with Nigeria, and this is what we’re doing in all levels, especially also, together with the people who have so much spirituality, so much energy that we should use this in a very positive way.
“All of us working together, brings Nigeria together and together we can do many things. So this is a way that shows that unity, and differences in unity can make a huge advantage and can create lots of ideas and solutions all together,” the Italian diplomat said.
FCT Minister, Nyesom Wike, said he was tremendously impressed and inspired by the award, intervention and dedication of the Christian Association of Nigeria through the women’s wing – WOWICAN for peace and unity of the country.
The minister who was represented by the Mandate Secretary, Dayo Benjamins- Lancyl, said he has principally positioned women in the Federal Capital Territory, for the next best ultimate version of their own expression in whatever sphere of engagement they find themselves in FCT.
According to the mandate secretary, His Excellency celebrates the Christian women, he celebrates the Muslim women, saying, even if there’s one who doesn’t believe in God, “I’m still going to celebrate her because I am called for all women, regardless of their cadre, their religious representation, or their political partisan reference or indigen status.”
Asked how the FCT minister’s administration will impact on women, she said, there has been a secretariat set up for the full representation, intervention, and innovation for women, and you can be certain that “we through alpha Wike’ style, and class, women will be reclassified in the federal capital territory.
General Secretary of CAN, Apostle Prof Samson Fatokun, said the convention was to intercede for peace in Nigeria.
The CAN General Secretary who was also honoured with an award, said, “we can see that Nigeria is presently in a turbulent situation and we need Christ the Prince of Peace as the theme for this year, said.
“We are here to brainstorm how we can articulate, how we can bring into play the peace that Jesus Christ as the Prince of Peace has promised to give unto the world. In this Nigerian situation, not only for Nigerian Christian woman, but for all women and for every Nigerian citizen.
“We look at service to God and humanity. The church exists in a state so we don’t limit the hour way to serve is to go we look at what individuals have contributed to the lives of people in this great nation and that was a condition used, the key prerequisite used for selecting the awardees.,” the Apostle said.