The Diocese of Lokoja Anglican Communion has bemoaned the prevailing political situation in the country and urged leaders at all levels to come up with efforts to provide succour to the citizens.
Bishop of Lokoja Diocese, Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, Most Rev. Emmanuel Egbunu stated this in his charge at the 3rd session of the 9th synod of the Diocese which took place between Thursday 14th October and Sunday 17th October 2021 at Christ Anglican Church in Lokoja, Kogi State capital with the theme, MAKING READY A PEOPLE PREPARED FOR THE LORD…. LUKE 1:17c.
He bemoaned policies of the government that have become inimical to the yearning of the people, noting that senators knew exactly what they were doing when they voted against the electronic vote-counting to encourage manipulation of results at the expense of “human lives that have become mere fodder for the fulfilment of personal ambitions.”
Archbishop Egbunu who reiterate the same point in an interview with journalists noted that though the political situation in the country gives a sense of hopelessness, there was no room for despair.
He noted that there is so much about Nigeria that calls for serious attention, noting that many have stated that fact, noting that it aggregates the corroding situation which is not only lamentable but scandalous.
In his words; “We do not need any more Prophets to tell us that we are far off (as a nation) en route the political paradise of our collective dream. A pastoral and prophetic responsibility constraints me to draw attention to any more thing that haunts our reality as a country.”
In his Charge, the Clergyman stated that where there are epidemics, natural disasters or accidents that claim lives in the country; “the casualty figures from the needless bloodshed and well-planned murders, the people drenched in the blood of the innocent and that they only take solace in the national mournings usually declared.
“The ritualists trade human in human parts freely and openly; the daily multiple accidents resulting from the condition of our roads no longer make many people blink an eye, and the Federal Road Safety Commission simply carry on their inevitable tasks. The assassins have never had a better boom in their macabre business than now.”
The Clergyman was unabashed in his criticism of some leaders – in the church and in public lives – who profess the name of God, saying if they claim to believe in Christ, they should run their affairs according to his commandments.
“When we cry in desperation about the manipulation to hijack the country by some vested interest groups and flagrant trampling of constitutional provisions, the question that comes to mind is, ‘are there no people in those assemblies and political groups with a Christian upbringing and the fear of God who were raised in Sunday Schools and who were prayed for by the Church to ensure that wholesome values are protected and preserved in the public arena?”
He urged people responsible for teaching God’s Word to devote themselves to the faithful study and teaching of the Word in season and out of season, adding that the pulpit must not be a place for entertainment or fairytales that are of no spiritual values.
On the call for the return of mission schools back to the church, Bishop Egbunu stated that seeing that people vested with the responsibility of impacting knowledge have failed as many are not qualified to be in charge of knowledge impartation.
He stressed that the right thing to do was to ensure that those from whom the institutions were taken over, should be given these schools back for proper management and administration.
He used the occasion to thank the current administration in Kogi State for its efforts towards religious balance as exemplified in the completion of Government House Church and thanked the current CAN Chairman, Bishop John Ibenu for his relentless interactions with the government.
The Anglican Church, he noted, has been at the forefront of development initiatives from the earliest years especially in the education sector, and asked that the shabby treatment being endured by the church leadership should change for the better.
The synod featured Bible studies, presentations on drug abuse, ICT in ministry, plenary sessions and Thanksgiving service for the 27th year anniversary of the Diocese among other activities.
At the Synod were; The Rt. Rev. Victor Okporu (Diocese of Western Izon) who preached at the Synod opening service, The Rt. Rev. Manasses Okere (Diocese of Isuikwuato/Umuneochi), who was the bible study coordinator and The Rt. Rev. Olubunmi Akinlade (Diocese of Ife), who gave a lecture and also the thanksgiving service sermon.
By Korede Akintunde and Ahmed Yabagi