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By NBF News

Bishop Ayo Oritsejafor yesterday emerged the president of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).

The Delta State born cleric, beat his opponent and incumbent, Bishop John Onaiyekan of the Catholic Church, who had occupied the position for the past three years by 66 votes out of 104 that voted while Onaiyekan got 38.

Until this election, Oritsejafor was the president of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN).

The chief electoral officer of the polls and the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC), Mr. John Kenedy Okpara, said at the presidential villa that the polls was keenly contested and was free and fair, and conducted under relaxed spiritual environment.

He said Onaiyekan immediately congratulated the winner as soon as the results were announced.

He added that the new CAN chairman would soon be presented to President Goodluck Jonathan by the outgoing president.

According to Okpara, the incumbent CAN Vice President, Arc. Bishop Nicolas Okoh, who was ordained early this year as the new Primate of the Anglican Church in Nigeria, would continue in his position with some other officers.

A date is to be set aside for his coronation and presentation with the staff of office to be done in a nationwide service at the National Christian Centre.

Meanwhile, Christians across the country are happy with the emergence of the new CAN leader and had expressed their total support and loyalty to him, praying that God would help him to deliver by promoting the desired unity among the faithful and those of other religions.

An Abuja base cleric, Rev. Charles Lamba and Pastor Tanko Musa from Jos said they have very high hopes that he would excel in his new assignment, having done very well in the leadership of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria.

While the PFN is made up of Christians of the Pentecostal faith only, the CAN is a national umbrella body of all Christians in the country incaluding the Protestants, Catholics, Pentecostals and others.