Nigerian Baptists React to Kerry's Visit Ahead of Election

February 04, 2015

We often take elections for granted in the United States. Most of us don't even bother to vote, treating the occasion as just average day. Perhaps we mainly just cheer the occasion as marking the end of hateful commercials and wasteful spending. Many of us probably even feel that regardless who won and lost, nothing will really change.

In other nations, elections can be significant moments. At times, they can even be dangerous. Will there be protesting or even rioting by the supporters of the losing candidates? Will there be accusations of voter fraud that undermine confidence in the election? Will the military or someone else attempt to negate the results? Democracy looks quite different with such questions hanging in the air as ballots are counted. 

Ethics Daily ran my latest article today that looks at issues in Nigeria, which will have a critical presidential election next week. The article is titled "Nigerian Baptists React to Kerry's Visit Ahead of Election." For the piece, I received comments from three key Nigerian Baptists: Israel Olofinjana (a Nigerian who serves as the minister of Woolwich Central Baptist Church in southeast London and the director of the Centre for Missionary from the Majority World), Timothy Olagbemiro (a retired top administrator at Bowden University, a private university affiliated with the Nigerian Baptist Convention), and Samson Ayokunle (president of the Nigerian Baptist Convention). They each offered some unique thoughts on Kerry's visit, the upcoming election, and dealing with the militant group Boko Haram.

I appreciate that Olofinjana, Olagbemiro, and Ayokunle took the time to help explain their context for Baptists in the U.S. and elsewhere to better understand. And I hope the elections - regardless of the outcome - will be fair and peaceful.

UPDATE [2-5-15]: My article jumped across the pond. The Baptist Times (the news outlet of the Baptist Union of Great Britain) ran the article.