Mr Dele Oshinowo, Executive Chairman of Agboyi-Ketu Local Council Development Area (LCDA), Lagos State, on Saturday urged Nigerian clerics to always tell politicians the truth for the sake of the masses.
Oshinowo made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on the sideline of the 10th Annual Ramadan Lecture and Special Prayer for the nation organised by Abdulwahid Islamic Foundation in Lagos.
According to him, if Nigerian clerics as leaders of religions were doing the expected by being frank with the truth when they meet with politicians, the nation would have moved forward.
“I believe that the clerics should support the government in policy formulation. They should help shape both the executive and legislative and judicial positions by advising and telling them the truth.
“Clerics are very important and we see that as people representing God. They should be able to, without fear, advise us toward the development of the state,” he said.
The council boss urged the people to get involved in policy making, stressing that leaving political office holders alone would spell doom for the ordinary people.
Oshinowo added: “They should not leave us alone, let’s know what we do right and wrong. Nation building is a collective responsibility of all irrespective of the religious affiliation.
“It is because of my perseverance that I became a chairman, if we all stayed back nothing positive can happen. If we distance ourself from politics and criticise what they do, no positive impact would be seen.
“Advisory role is important, when you speak out we will do better. You can change the tide when you keep counselling us, especially the Imam. Your role is to check our excesses as well.”
On security, the council boss urged clerics to participate in ensuring peace and security of lives and property through their sermons and helping to take the minds of youths from vices.
“Now, in Nigeria, clerics must come out enmass and denounce killings and kidnappings. They need to talk more about security and protection of lives and property,” Oshinowo said.