Mokokchung, 13 April (MTNews): In a statement issued today, independent candidate Hayithung Bill Lotha has expressed his full endorsement for the Nagaland Baptist Church Council’s (NBCC) Clean Election Movement (CEM) and its 152-hour chain of prayer initiative for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in 2024.

Hayithung Bill Lotha BJP
Hayithung Bill Lotha

Lotha praised the NBCC’s call to “vote consciously by fearing God, and exercising God-given ability to choose right from wrong,” describing it as a “morally right stance” and a “spiritual awakening message of hope.”

Highlighting the challenges faced during elections in Nagaland, Lotha commented, “In every election, both state and central in Nagaland, we get to come across blatant tribalism/clanism, range/village ism, muscle power, electoral coup/booth capturing, free flow of alcohol/drugs abuse, and vote buying and money power at play. It totally negates the basic core principles of Christianity.”

Responding to the negative reactions from the JD (U) party towards NBCC’s CEM, Lotha criticized their statements as “childish, immature, shameful, and morally wrong.” He further expressed similar views for any political party openly criticizing the NBCC, which is the apex Christian body in the state revered by lakhs of Christians in Nagaland.

Lotha addressed the allegations made by JD(U) regarding reverends, pastors, and prominent church workers supporting political candidates during the State General Election 2023. He reminded the JD(U) that in a constitutional democracy like India, every citizen has the right to support, campaign, and vote for any particular candidate from any political party. Drawing a comparison with the USA, Lotha pointed out that elected US Presidents often induct reverends and pastors as their Ecclesiastical/Spiritual Advisors, citing Rev. Billy Graham who served under three US Presidential administrations.

Further, Lotha made an appeal to the people of Nagaland to prayerfully participate in the NBCC’s 152-hour chain of prayer for the ensuing 2024 Parliamentary Lok Sabha Elections.

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