Politics and religion continue to interlock itself with the affairs of man despite his attempt to overcome the dictates and control of pious living.
Religion has become the basis and custom upon which many makes informed decisions about their lives, with respect to their sect’s beliefs and conviction.
In recent times the world has observed the contest for government and political position by some religious leader who is believed to lead the people into the knowledge of God.
Claiming competence and capacity not just to rule and lead a religious sect, these leaders have shown not just interest but great wit and supposed leadership strengths.
It is believed that most of these clerics are meant for the pulpit, ministering pious teaching to their congregation and their addicted followers.
But with the current emergence of some religious clerics aiming for political position, the world is yet to see what nations this new emerging clerics would build.
Some have tried and tested their chances, contesting for political position in several parastatals, while some won, some lost but the most significant thing that must not be overlooked is the capacity of these people to pull a crowd of faithful followers who might help them secure not just any political position, but become the president of their various countries.
Base on prospect and assumed possibility, here’s a list of some religious leaders that can become president, depending on their ability to channel their faithful followers into a large pool of voters that can win them an election.
1. Guru Marahaj Ji
Impossible is only a word spelt, I’m possible.
Born in Oyo state with the name Mohammed Ajirobatan Ibrahim, he acclaims himself as the Living Perfect Master he also names himself as Black Jesus, claiming he has all the power to solve all illness and problems affecting all humanity.
Guru Maharaj Ji has been known to air his views and opinion on the politics and governance of Nigeria, from his abode called “Satguru Maharaj Ji Village”, on a lonely stretch of the Ibadan-Lagos Expressway near Ibadan.
Backing his desires with actions, New Telegraph in its news report on the 5th Of July 2019, reports that Guru told the current administration led by President Buhari to appoint him as his spiritual adviser.
According to Marahaj, every other religious leader and groups have failed, he made this known in a press conference that marks the 26 ‘Anniversary Celebrations of Nigeria Declaration as the new Holy Land of the Universe.’
He also asked the federal government to reveal the names of those involved in the mismanagement of funds of some privatised Nigerian Companies including Nigerian Airways, Ajaokuta Steel, Delta Steel, Nigeria Electric Power Authority among others.
In his words, he said; “The Federal Government should increase the reward for whistleblower to 10% in order to encourage more Nigerians to take up the challenges, Alaafin of Oyo should be made Chairman of the Council of Traditional Rulers in Nigeria ‘in consideration of his position from the inception of the project Nigeria as the leading king of the land,”
His first speech on political commentation was In 2000 when he asserted that the visit of President Bill Clinton to Nigeria was part of the plan of the American’s to establish a military base in Nigeria and take over Africa. He also in 2003 said that the re-election of President Olusegun Obasanjo was part of a “Golden Change”, for which he was responsible.
With his proposal to President Buhari, it could be deduced that Guru Marahaj Ji has the desire for a political appointment and if his desire is fueled and watered, he may vie for the position of the president.
Guru’s influence on his followers and his popularity in the eastern-western region in the nation, coupled with his supposed correct prediction on political matters, has won a face and a voice for him in Nigeria, which, if tailored towards vying for the presidential position, might win the seat.
2. Prof Yemi Osinbajo
Oluyemi Olukeke Yemi Osinbajo, the current Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, who was a former Pastor in charge of the Lagos Province 48 (Olive Tree provincial headquarter) of The Redeemed Christian Church of God in Ikoyi.
Prof Yemi has been a great political voice in the nation who said that he’s just on loan to Nigeria, that his primary calling and assignment is pastoral.
In 2013, upon the formation of the All Progressive Congress (APC), he was called upon alongside notable Nigerians to construct the manifesto of the new party, with the vision of the “Roadmap To A New Nigeria” a document published by APC if elected to power.
Upon the parties choice for a suitable running mate for the party presidential flag bearer, retired General Muhammed Buhari, Prof Yemi Osinbajo was announced on the 17th of December 2014 by the presidential candidate of the APC to the shock of all, despite the train of individuals with a dexterous political background.
Winning the election in 2015 and re-election in 2019, President Buhari and his Vice, Prof Osinbajo is expected to hand over power to the western region of Nigeria come 2023 according to the rotational passing of power through the three most recognised tribe in the nation, Yoruba, Hausa, Igbo.
It is rumoured that the Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo has won the heart of President Buhari and he might hand over power to him as the president of Nigeria.
The rumour was borne upon a statement that was made by the President on the 23rd of March 2019, according to a news report by Blue Print which states; “President Buhari speaks on Osinbajo’s humility, he said he has not seen any vice president as humble as Osinbajo, this the type of a man Nigerians need in 2023.”
Considering the character credibility and the transparency with which he runs the government and his substantial capacity in managing the affairs of the states in the absence of the president, it might be safe to say that Prof Yemi Osinbajo may become Nigeria president if his party allows him to represent them in 2023.
3. Abdur-Raheem Adebayo Shittu
Silence moves faster than noise, cause no one even notice it’s in motion. Such is the life of the minister of communication under the current administration led by President Muhammadu Buhari.
His first feat achieved was becoming the first youngest honourable member at age 26, taking the office of the honourable member of the Oyo State House Of Assembly.
Thou Shittu did not have a recorded pedigree as a cleric or in clerical activities, he is pronounced voice in the Muslim, Christian war raging the nation, having written 3 books addressing the Islamic faith, its stand and the reason for the conflict between the Muslim and Christain faith.
The political ascendency of Shittu, starting as the honourable member of the Oyo State House Assembly between October 1979 and September 1983, he went further to become the Oyo State Commissioner for Information, Culture and Home Affairs (in the Victor Omololu Olunloyo administration) between October and December 1983.
Not relenting in his political pursuit, Shittu soon became Attorney General and Oyo State Commissioner for Justice (in the Rashidi Adewolu Ladoja government), then Member of the National Political Reforms Conference in 2005 and currently the Minister of Communication in 2015, appointed by President Buhari into his ministerial cabinet, it is somehow believed that he might be re-appointed for the next four year.
With consideration to his capacity and leadership acumen, having joggle successfully the political terrain of Nigeria despite its coarse state since he was 26, it is believed that if he continues with his silent yet effective move in politics, he can emerge the president of Nigeria.
4. Pastor Tunde Bakare
A Prophetic-Apostolic pastor in the country, Pastor Tunde is recognised international televangelism which has been very critical of the Nigerian government.
Tunde Bakare is the senior pastor of Latter Rain Assembly, Lagos.
His bold outspoken character against the Nigerian government caused his arrest in 2002 after he finished preaching a sermon, openly criticizing the government of Olusegun Obasanjo, but was released in less than 24 hours by the State Security Service now DSS.
His first major political engagement was In 2011, when the Presidential candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change Party, CPC, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari announced him as his running mate but they both lost to the People’s Democratic Party, PDP.
Rising from the dust, Pastor Bakare during the 2018 new year eve, shock his congregation when he announced his intention to contest for the presidential position,
he said; “I heard the Lord say, politics is not over for you, run for president. “And (the lord) said to me, I’ll work it out myself and make it happen in due course.
“Please trust me, I lie not in the Holy Ghost. This is not easy for me to share with you. I share this with you so that you can pray along with me.
“It appears destiny is calling and the time is at hand, but who is sufficient for these things? As I hear more, You’d be the first to know by the grace of God.”
This ambition has not seen the light of day, as the cleric did not get to participate in the contest for the presidential position this year, 2019.
But resilience and determination is a unique character of Pastor Tunde Bakare, and with that, he might be able to fight his way into the position of the most powerful seat in the nation.
5. Pat Robertson
Marion Gordon “Pat” Robertson is an American southern baptist church pastor. He is also a media mogul, political commentator and a former Republican President.
In his account, Pat revealed that he was not a serious Christian until he failed the Yale bar exam, thou he graduated near the top of his class. Pat became a born again Christian after the incident and began a career as a minister of the gospel.
With over five decades, Pat had established several major organisation as well as a university: The Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN), the International Family Entertainment Inc. (ABC Family Channel), Regent University, the American Center for Law & Justice (ACLJ), the Founders Inn and Conference Center, the Christian Coalition, an L-1011 Flying Hospital, Operation Blessing International Relief and Development Corporation, and CBN Asia.
Taking the tour into politics, In September 1986, Pat Robertson revealed his intention to contest for the presidential position of the United States Of America. He added that he was only going to continue the pursuit if three million people could sign up for his campaign by September 1987. Three million people signed up and at the time he has been able to raise millions of dollars for his campaign.
Robertson ran a standard conservative platform with the policies to ban pornography, reform the education system, and eliminate departments such as the Department of Education and the Department of Energy. He also supported a constitutional amendment requiring a balanced federal budget.
His shot for the presidential position was a big feat for him as his opponent is a veteran politician, Gorge. W. Bush. Pat lost to Gorge in the primaries. He later spoke at the 1988 Republican National Convention in New Orleans, telling his remaining supporters to vote for Gorge, who ended up winning the nomination and the election.
Pat returned to CBN and remain their religious leader.
If Pat Robertson had remained resilient and tried again, taking a cue from the failures of American’s greatest President, Abraham Lincoln, who turned his many failures into adventures for a better chance of success, Pat might have been seating in the position of the world most powerful seat.
Failure is not a permanent defeat but an opportunity to try again, with a better experience. If all these names mentioned above would take chance and time into their hands, and will their destiny aright they might be able to someday sit on the most revered position as the President of their different countries.
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