As Christians in Nigeria join others in the world to celebrate Easter amid COVID-19 pandemic, Governors of Osun State, Adegboyega Oyetola; Kaduna State, Nasir el-Rufai; and Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, have felicitated with Christians on the occasion.
Other governors that joined Christians in the country to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ are Hope Uzodinma (Imo); Dapo Abiodun (Ogun); David Umahi (Ebonyi); Douye Diri (Bayelsa) and Alhaji Inuwa Yahaya (Gombe).
The governors urged Christian faithful to use this period of Easter celebration to pray against coronavirus.
In an Easter message on Saturday in Osogbo, Oyetola urged the Christians to emulate Jesus Christ by making sacrifices that would advance the cause of development and take into consideration the welfare of others as they celebrate the death and resurrection of Christ.
Oyetola urged Christians to also use the occasion to intensify prayers and devotion for God’s intervention as the country and the world at large are fighting the scourge of coronavirus.
On his part, el-Rufai said he was sad that COVID-19 had impacted on formal acts of worship to celebrate the festival.
In a goodwill message by the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Muyiwa Adekeye, the governor noted that the enduring message of Easter, which is victory over darkness “is poignant amidst the uniquely difficult circumstances in which Easter is being celebrated this year.
“The closure of churches due to quarantine conditions in many places across the world, makes it impossible to celebrate Easter in the traditional way; a most unusual development,” he said.
Also, Okowa in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Olisa Ifeajika, said Easter is a time for Christian faithful to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus.
According to him, the power of the resurrection crystallised in Easter, presents in 2020, an opportunity for Christians to seek the face of God in prayers to heal Nigeria and the world of the rampaging coronavirus.
In his Easter message, Diri implored Christians to remain steadfast and keep their hope in Jesus Christ alive in the face of the daunting COVID-19 challenges.
Diri said the pandemic was only a temporary setback as “there is always light at the end of the dark tunnel”.
He noted that the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, offered great hope to everyone that believed in Him and in the overcoming power of His resurrection exemplified by the Easter season.
Yahaya, while felicitating with the Christian community, called on the faithful to use the period to pray for continuous peace, stability and end to the COVID-19 pandemic. He noted that Easter symbolises love, sacrifice, service to God and country as well as triumph of good over evil.
He urged the people to always reflect on the lessons and significance of the season and demonstrate same in their lives.
Umahi, in his Easter broadcast, banned okada riders from operating in all parts of Ebonyi State.
He said they had been seen contravening the COVID-19 law of the state.
Uzodinma assured the people of state that with total confidence in God, COVID-19 would be defeated in the state.
The governor in his Easter state-wide broadcast on the people said the state and the nation were relying solely in God to defeat the global pandemic.
He noted that “Christ’s resurrection is a sign of assurance that after the coronavirus pandemic will come the joy of triumph”.
In his message, Abiodun called on residents and citizens of the state to continue playing their roles as committed citizens through love and sacrifice for the general good of the society.
In a message by his CPS, Kunle Somorin, the governor said the stay-at-home measure was meant to flatten the curve of coronavirus.
Abiodun urged all Nigerians to comply with the various measures to bring down the global menace.
The Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, urged residents of the state to be prayerful and to imbibe Christ-like attitude during the Easter celebration.
Makinde, in his Easter message to the people of the state, said Christians must utilise the opportunity of the Easter season to intensify prayers for the state in particular and Nigeria in general.
The governor also encouraged the people to imbibe the lessons of sacrificial living and love, which he described as the hallmarks of Easter.
Also, Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, urged Christian faithful to show good neighbourliness to one another, asking them to mark the Easter festivities at home.
In an Easter address, the governor said this year’s celebration would be marked in ‘unusual circumstances,’ as Christians would celebrate one of the most important events in the Christian calendar, at home, because of the restrictions, which have been imposed to limit the spread of the coronavirus.