… Laments Nigeria decorated with instances of bloodletting in all its regions and at different times
The Most Rev. Peter Akinola, former Anglican Primate of the Church of Nigeria, said Nigeria, since independence, has advised Nigerians “Let us be careful about the life we live and be weary in judging others especially when we don’t have all the facts”.
Akinola who posited that the country has been decorated with many instances of bloodletting in all its regions and at different times, added that Nigerians should take heed that they don’t spend their today in any way that will ruin their tomorrow.
The Anglican Primate who is also the former Bishop of Abuja, made these remarks as he gave the sermon at the funeral service of the late former Head of the Interim Government, Chief Ernest Shonekan, who passed away on January 11.
He also noted that some political opportunists took advantage of the chaos in the country to feed themselves fat till today.
Citing examples of the bloodletting in the country, Akinola said, “Remember the Western Region ‘Operation Wet e!’, remember the pogroms in northern Nigeria, remember the coups and counter-coups. Recall the devastating 30-month civil war (1967-1970). Remember the reckless armed robbery attacks in all the zones, coupled with the numerous political assassinations all of which claimed precious lives we cannot create; killing millions of Nigerians.”
The Primate also spoke about the many hurdles the late Shonekan had to go through as the Head of the ING, stating that he (Shonekan) only accepted the position ‘reluctantly’ because he did not know who the next violence would consume and who would remain if he did not.
He said, “He (Shonekan) reluctantly said, ‘maybe, we will stand in the gap. Even though very risky, Nigeria is more important than me’. Some political opportunities took over the June 12 situation and “made the loudest noise. The same thing is happening today with the crop of Nigerian politicians who feed fat on Nigerian chaos.
“Opportunists took over the June 12 issue and they made the loudest noise. People of God, on June 12, they were feeding fat as they are doing today. The same political opportunists are feeding fat on Nigerian chaos even today.
“As bad as Nigeria is today, they are saying, “All is well! They are even saying Nigeria has never had it better!” Really? Should I go into the details? Time won’t allow. You know what you are going through in your various locations. One thing I know is that Nigeria has not been this bad. Some are saying this is the best time in Nigeria. What a pity! Whatever you may say about this man (Shonekan), from our standpoint, put his life on the line to save this country.
“But, he was not being a typical ambitious Nigerian politician, refused to do anything to preserve himself in office. A typical Nigerian politician could have done anything possible to continue in office come rain and fire. He has finished his race and is now asleep in the lord.
“Let us be careful about the life we live and be weary in judging others especially when we don’t have all the facts. Take heed that you don’t spend your today in any way that will ruin your tomorrow. Shonekan has left this world of depriving wickedness and many church militants and all the difficulties and problems, and is now at rest at The Triumphant,” he added.
Speaking on the life of the late Head of ING, the 79-year-Akinola said, “I know him to be a man of prayer and great faith in God. Wherever he was in the world, the first thing he would want to do is to find out where the church was so that he could go and worship God. He would never miss his early morning communion.
“He was utterly committed about everything that has to do with God. He never compromised his faith totally unassuming. His love for God was visibly seen in how he gave himself to the people. I am aware that to his wife and his children, he was the best husband and father to them.”