April 25, 2024
Opinions

Tinubu should fix Nigeria through reconciliation, unity, peace and prosperity -Bishop Seun Adeoye

By Clement Adeyi

Bishop Seun Adeoye is the General Overseer of Sufficient Grace and Truth Ministry, Okinni, Osun State. He is also the Director of Information, World Bishop Council in Africa. In this interview, he spoke glowingly on how the President-Elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, could fix Nigeria, the roles of the church in ensuring his successful administration and a better Nigeria.

What roles do you think the church should play in ensuring the success of the incoming administration to be led by Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu as the president who will be sworn in on May 29?

There are two fundamental roles that the church must play in ensuring the success of the administration. One of them is advisory role. As Christian leaders, we are fathers to political office holders and other leaders, either by election or appointive. It is our duty to advise or counsel them and guide them appropriately in the right way to go as they carry out their leadership roles. As they serve under divine guidance and expectations of good performance, I urge Nigerians to be calm and never to spoil for war. War is not good for us as a country. We don’t have any other country. You may know the beginning of a war but may not know how it will end.

We should not think that they know everything and what to do. We should show them the way. Office leaders are always sorrounded by boot leakers, sycophants and praise singers who may not tell them the truth if they err. But as ministers of God who must uphold the sanctity of truth as representatives of Christ, the way, the truth and life, we must be candid in telling them the truth. If they do well, we should commend them and if they err, we should correct them to go the right way and serve well.

The second role is to pray for them. The bible says that we should pray for those in authority. Our leaders need prayers for wisdom and knowledge to be able to carry the affairs of the nation.
They need our prayers for guidance and to be able to come up with good policies to serve the interest of the nation as well as the political will to serve with the fear of God.

We also need to pray for them not to be selfish by giving opportunities to their own children, while the children of the less privileged are abandoned. If they don’t want a revolution, they should do the needful by carrying everybody along, especially the youth who must not be neglected.

What do you expect the President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to do as soon as he assumes office?

The president-elect is coming to meet a lot of problems on ground. Some of these problems are man-made which he and his political party, (APC) contributed to. The presidential election that eventuated in his emergence was fraught with a lot of agitations occasioned by alleged malpractices, killings, maiming intimidation in some parts of the country, especially Lagos.

A lot of people had thought that the election would unify the nation, but unfortunately, the reverse was the case.

There is a lot of division, especially among the Igbo and the Yoruba.

To some extent, the nation has been polarised and a lot of people are still aggrieved because they feel that the election lacks credibility.

So, the first thing Tinubu must bring to the table as soon as he assumes office is reconciliation. He has to reconcile and unify the nation.

Our unity as a country is very important. Our unity in diversity can not be compromised. Nigeria has about 150 ethnic groups that must be encouraged to live together in peace, unity, progress and prosperity. This is what Obasanjo did during his administration which I always commend him for. During his time, there was no agitation by people to go their ways. There was no separatist agitation. Tinubu should make reconciliation and unity of the country a priority during his administration

The second thing Tinubu should so is to revitalize the economy. Nigerian economy is in a shambles. There is acute poverty, hardship, hunger and starvation in the land. People are hungry and passing through different difficulties.

He should do all the necessary things to fix the nation’s economy and make life meaningful to the nation.

The president-elect is coming to meet a lot of problems on ground

The third thing he should do is find a lasting solution to insecurity. Before the elections, the perennial insecurity problem subsided a bit, but immediately after the elections, banditry and kidnapping resurfaced in some parts of the country, especially Benue, Kogi and you begin to wonder if the banditry and kidnapping are political. Who told bandits to stop banditry before the elections and immediately after the exercise, they resumed? The incoming president should ensure that the country is secured. He needs to put adequate security architecture in place to ensure that Nigeria remains live in peace, stability and unity. We need a government that can earn our confidence that it can secure the nation.

He should not start by removing fuel subsidy. If he does, there will be a lot of hardship, agitations and cry everywhere. It will be difficult to afford the N750 per litre price being proposed if subsidy is removed.

Tinubu should also consider a government of national unity which is capable of engendering peace among the aggrieved.He should not run a government of winner takes all.

He should not start by removing fuel subsidy. If he does, there will be a lot of hardship

He should search very carefully for think tanks from different tribal backgrounds, irrespective of their political parties to form his government. With a government of national unity, every body will have a sense of belonging and participation in governance. It will also go a long way in checkmating agitation for separatism.

What is your message to Nigerians in the wake of the political and economic upheavals in the country?

I urge Nigerians to calm down and be prayerful. We don’t want war because it can not take us anywhere. As I said earlier, you may know the beginning of a war but may not know how it will end.

Look at Ukraine and Russia, Syria and Sudan where wars have been raging and a lot of killings and destruction have been taking place. In what ways have these crises helped the warring countries and their people?

They should wait for the wisdom of the judiciary and outcome of the election tribunal judgement. I urge the youth to calm down and repose confidence in this country that it shall still be good and great. They should not take laws into their hands and cause any havoc. Let’s carry the burdens of the country together and solve our problems together and never tread wrong path because two wrongs can not make a right.

The youth should maintain the spirit they applied in voting for a good leader in the recent election.

They should not lose hope in this country but believe that better days will come for Nigeria.

What values has your ministry been able to add to sociopolitical and economic life of the society?

My church which is known as Sufficient Grace and Truth Ministry makes a lot of impacts mainly on rural communities. The church is located at Rehoboth Arena, Oba Road, Okinni, Osun State.

God has a purpose for putting us there. In the rural community where the church is located, there are many social issues that call for concern. There are youths that engage in drugs and young girls getting pregnant. But as a

Christian ministry, we try as much as possible to take the gospel of Christ to them by telling them the implications of such wayward life. We engage in counseling to take them away from the streets and lead them to Christ. We have a lot of youths and children in the church who are future leaders. Therefore, we train them to become responsible children of God and people in the society.

We are also very active in politics and try as much as possible to lead our people aright, especially in election of good leaders and government.

We have a programne called: “Let’s Go Rural.” Through the programme, we offer money, clothing and food items to the less privileged in rural areas to make life meaningful to them in the little ways we can assist. We also use the programme to preach the word of God to people and lead them to Christ. By God’s grace many people have given their lives to Christ and are abiding in him.

We shall continue to add the values to people, especially the immediate environment where the church is located and even beyond.

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