FEATURE ARTICLE

Christopher Chibueze OnyekuruWednesday, December 4, 2013
oykchris@yahoo.com
Barcelona, Spain

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ROCHAS: PAY ATTENTION TO ARCHBISHOP OBINNA`S WORDS

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Then Nathan said to David, "You are the man! This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: 'I anointed you king over Israel, and I delivered you from the hand of Saul. I gave your master's house to you, and your master's wives into your arms. I gave you all Israel and Judah. And if all this had been too little, I would have given you even more. 9Why did you despise the word of the LORD by doing what is evil in His eyes? You struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword and took his wife to be your own. - 2 Samuel: 7-9

remember when I wrote an article on this medium, titled, "Religious leaders have a hand in the governance of Nigeria". I remember that I cited instances of how Nathan rebuked David (a powerful king) in the bible and how it got David to repent. I also know that I related this incident to the one which occurred in our country when the then Archbishop Peter Akinola made such rebuke against former President Obasanjo and his colleagues during a ceremony inside the church.

Two Sundays ago, another respected religious leader made a landmark reprimand to the governor of Imo state, Rochas Okorocha, over the state of affairs of the state. I have known Archbishop Obinna to be a man of God whom our Lord God speaks through him whenever Imo state is headed in the wrong direction. I know that for the Archbishop to have spoken, a lot has simply gone in our state.

Things have gone wrong in Imo state.

Nigeria is a country famous for its powerful religious background. And I have always said it that for the country to be redirected, I believe that religious leaders, more than the masses, can work harder to turn the land around, just by speaking out. The saying by some Nigerians that religious leaders are not supposed to meddle into the affairs of political governance of the country is absolute nonsense. Those who still stick to this view should be considered as people who rather benefit from the deplorable situation in Nigeria than wanting to see positive changes in the country.

Although Nigerian political office holders all seem invincible, they are all a set of fearful human beings. They are afraid to see the wrath of God brought to their doorsteps. That is why our religious leaders need always to face them and tell them the truth when they are going astray. It will help to make them change their courses.

Governor Okorocha might not particularly be a bad man. While it may be that before he became Imo governor he had a lot of goodwill gestures for Imo people, over time as the governor, he has made some nasty leadership errors which whether made deliberately or out of ignorance, the governor has gone out of course and need to be called to order. I will give my views over this in my next article. But I will like the governor to take the message Archbishop Obinna passed to him with seriousness as a message of wisdom from God. The archbishop says that, "there is nothing to show for our money in Imo State." And that, "our money (Imo money) is being used as if it is personal money of the Governor when it is not supposed to be so." He also reminds the governor that it was at the same church's podium that he was elected. To avoid the wrath of God, Governor Okorocha needs to give thoughts to the sayings of the man of God and not joke over it. The governor may think that by what he has done so far in the state, he has worked excellently. But that may also be a thought borne out of ignorance. The archbishop tells him that, "people of Imo State are still waiting for the fulfillment of your campaign promises".

Archbishop Obinna's boldness has a lot of significance. Our country needs many more men of God of his type. The men who hold political offices across the country all have one church or mosque where they worship. The heads of these religious bodies should learn how to reprove them when it is time to do that, and not to always pamper politicians at all times, as this does not help our country in any way.

Someone who calls himself a leader should always know when he has sinned against the people.

Then David said to Nathan, "I have sinned against the LORD."

Christopher Chibueze Onyekuru is the author of the new book: A TRAGIC COMPULSION. This fiction is about a young Nigerian who tries to remain honorable as he struggles in Spain to fight his family’s poverty, while trying to question his mind on why the Sub-Saharan Africa remains unmoving in the race towards development. Free excerpts of this book could be read on http://booklocker.com/books/6204.html

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