From David Onwuchekwa, Nnewi
The Bishop of Anglican Communion Diocese of Nnewi, Anambra State, Rt Rev Ndubuisi Obi, has decried what he called denominationalism as a dangerous trend in Anambra politics, urging voters to rise to the occasion and no longer take a back seat.
Rev Obi made this known at the Bishop’s Court on Thursday when he addressed a press conference over an upcoming synod of the Diocese slated for September this year to hold at St James Anglican Church, Ichi. He declared that the ‘Government of the day’ in Anambra had deeply marginalised the Anglican Communion.
The Bishop cited a recent case of vehicles distribution to missions that had schools for vulnerable children and regretted that despite the existence of such schools in Nnewi owned by the Nnewi Anglican Diocese Government did not deem it appropriate to extend the vehicle donation to the Diocese. He said that the Government after distributing vehicles to the church of its choice, still had some vehicles left undistributed without recourse to the Anglican Communion.
‘Denominationalism is a factor now in Anambra politics. The State should not be seen as belonging to any particular denomination. That’s a lie from the pit of hell. The church, both the Anglican and Catholic should rise and give the politicians direction. I’m sure that if an election is conducted free and fair, people from other churches can comfortably win the election. Anambra has the largest number of billionnaires in Nigeria if not in Africa. And there are people of wisdom that come out for this governorship election.
‘If the politicians have adopted zoning, the church can also adopt zoning formula. Recently, vehicles were distributed for special schools in the state but the Anglican Church got nothing,’ the Bishop complained.
For the upcoming synod with the theme “Created for Dominion”, the Bishop said the theme was carved around the preparedness of the church to take dominion and never to take a back seat again to shy away from political activities and other levels of life in the state.
The Bishop used the opportunity to announce that the synod would be a time to give an account of his stewardship and to point to where money realised from the previous synod was spent.
He said that the Diocese had registered a firm with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) with the business name, DONAC-ADON with which the Diocese would go into the oil and gas business. He told journalists that within the period under review, the Diocese had purchased 250 plots of land where it would build an estate that would house the Bishop’s Court, a secretariat for the church, quarters, mini cathedral and a guest house.
Bishop Obi said that the church would build mini markets where the Diocese’s agricultural products and produce would be exhibited for sale, having intensified its farming activities at various locations in the Diocese.
On the state of the nation, the Bishop who had become emotional at this point said he never liked to discuss Nigerian politics to avoid heartbreak.
He said there was zero leadership at the federal level. He noted that he always got infuriated for the Federal Government to always talk about the ‘Presidency’ instead of the ‘President’ and asked whether Nigerians elected the presidency and not the president. He described Nigeria as a failed state.
‘The Government of the day has failed woefully. They should change their mindset for the remaining two years they will stay in office. Marginalisation must stop.
‘Look at the appointment of the Chief of Army Staff where an Igbo man was the next senior officer to take the shot but a junior officer was rather appointed from the bottom. And the rest were retired. Is that good? This is the Government of the Fulani, by the Fulani and for the Fulani.
‘Agitations everywhere show that Nigerians are not happy with the leadership at the centre. Igbo, Yoruba agitate and the Niger Delta will soon join.
‘If I tell you the kind of dehumanisation people were subjected to in Imo State the day we travelled there for evangelism, you will marvel. At the checkpoints where you have the soldiers, you will disembark from your vehicle and raise your hands up including those with their Bibles and some women who had their babies strapped at their backs. Not to talk of the traffic jam the exercise causes on a daily basis. That is the situation in which we find ourselves,’ he recounted.
Bishop Obi said instead of the Federal Government mobilising forces to handle the issue of banditry in some parts of the North where, according to him, schoolchildren were freely abducted, ‘they only show power and force in the South East.’