A Christian cleric, Johnson Suleman, has advised Nigerian politicians to “go home”, instead of going to the court, when they lose an election.
“Politics is a game, when you lose don’t go to court, go home,” Mr Suleman, the founder, and pastor of the Omega Fire Ministries, said in a video that is being circulated on Twitter.
Mr Suleman, popularly called Apostle Suleman, made the remark while preaching on Sunday in his church in Auchi, Edo State.
“Don’t go to court, go home. It is not your father’s property. If you don’t win today, you may win tomorrow,” he said.
The cleric, who said it was only God who knew who would be Nigeria’s president, advised Christians to do away with hatred that was borne out of politics.
“Many of you now in church, different parties, you are now enemies because of political party. Not knowing that the players are friends, they will phone themselves and say, ‘What you did was wrong”. And the other one would say, ‘Don’t worry, don’t worry, we will talk about it. We will meet in the mosque’.
“And you are there killing yourself!
“It’s a game. Don’t die. Don’t kill yourself.
“What this country needs is peace! Don’t abuse yourselves, let there be peace,” he said.
While Mr Suleman did not mention the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, by name, similar calls have been directed by some Nigerians at Mr Abubakar.
Mr Abubakar, who lost the country’s presidential election to the incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari, is heading to court to challenge the outcome of the election.
Some Nigerians, including Mr Abubakar’s supporters, like Dele Momodu, the publisher of the Ovation magazine, have been trying to dissuade him from challenging the election’s result. Some have argued that a legal challenge will continue to create tension in the country.
But the former vice president has vowed to go ahead with the legal action. His supporters argue such move will help the nation’s democratic process.