Reverend Uja Tor Uja, executive secretary, Nigeria Christian Pilgrim Commission, NCPC, has called on the leadership of the country to create a reward system for honesty, stressing the need for Nigerians to make truth and honesty the cornerstones of their existence.
Truth, he said, is key if Nigeria must achieve its full potential. Uja made the call during a recent courtesy visit to TELL headquarters in Lagos. Fielding questions from the magazine’s editors and reporters who welcomed him, the NCPC boss said no matter what structure is in place in the country, once truth is lacking in the individual lives of the people, Nigeria “will continue to go back to square one.” According to him, while there is a Nigerian constitution to guide citizens of the country, truth should be the grand norm as that is the only way the country’s problems can be solved.
“If we can do this, we will build a nation that has the happiest people on earth. Many of our leaders make promises, but when truth is lacking, the best ideas will be a waste. If we are committed to truth, projects will be started and completed,” he said.
Noting that Nigeria is a country whose rich human capital, churches, priests, and pilgrims are classified among the best in the world, Uja said it would be ideal for the country to take advantage of such reputation to establish itself as a leading nation. According to him, Nigeria has the most organized pilgrimage in the world but pilgrimage, he said, should go beyond just visiting other countries. It should also be about people coming back home to translate what they have seen to something better for Nigeria. Pilgrimage, he added, “should be a development project to transform the country.”
In this regard, the executive secretary said the Commission seeks to improve Nigeria’s rating by liaising with Nigerians on how best to, among others, project the country’s image abroad and maximize the gains associated with pilgrimage. Giving insight into the evolution of pilgrimage, Uja explains: “It began with God’s command for His people to go to their own place of choice to worship Him. God sent Abraham to Mount Moriah. Jerusalem became the most important pilgrimage site ever since King David moved the Ark of God to Jerusalem. So, people always went there to worship.”
On challenges being faced by the commission, the NCPC boss said it has not been easy securing land and funds to finance some of its major projects since the federal government is no longer willing to fund pilgrimage. “We are trying to get hectares of land very close to the international airport for our pilgrims’ camp. We spoke with Lagos State government and we are yet to get a good place. Obviously, there are no such lands in Lagos. But we are going to speak with Ogun State government,” he assured.
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