The Bishop of Owo Anglican Diocese, Right Reverend Stephen Fagbemi has called on the Federal government to exercise caution in dealing with various agitators across the country and focus on major security challenges facing Nigeria.
Right Reverend Fagbemi made the call during his charge at the formal opening of the 3rd session of the 13th Synod of the Diocese of Owo, Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) at the Saint Paul’s Church, Okeluse in Ose Local Government Area of the state.
The theme for the synod is “Abiding Fruitfulness”.
Reading his charge, right Revd Fagbemi expressed worries that the Federal had not been able to over security challenges which had led to agitations from some sections of the country.
The cleric said rather than dissipating efforts on chasing agitators, efforts should be used on solving poverty, kidnapping and banditry that had bedeviled the land.
He said “While the troubles of our land are truly numerous, insecurity is one that has overwhelmed everyone in recent times, and it is evident that our national government has not been able to overcome yet.
Banditry has brought untold hardship and untimely death to many communities, and the highways are not safe. Kidnapping seems to have become a lucrative but wicked business in our land. Many lives have been lost and millions of money paid on ransoms. We need deliverance.
The agitation of the South West people of Nigeria came to the fore because of the attacks on its people and the mindless killings of valued souls attributed to Fulani herdsmen.
While no area or state has been spared including Ogun, Ekiti and Ondo; it is in Oyo State in lbarapa Local Government Area that it has received more prominence.
And this is why Sunday lgboho has suddenly become a household name symbolizing the aspiration of the people for freedom and deliverance from these evil people.
It was disturbing to see the undeserved attack on his house in Ibadan on July 1. The government needs to exercise caution about attacking these people.
It must rather concentrate efforts at tackling the issues that led to their emergence. If only our government could exact the same efforts it used on attacking Chief Sunday Adeyemo a.k.a. Sunday Igboho’s house and use the same intelligence and skill it used on kidnapping and bringing Nnamdi Kanu the leader of [PCB to Nigeria, on the bandits and insurgents in Nigeria, our country would have become a better place to live in.
Whatever the Government of Nigeria is doing with these individuals and others, it should bear in mind that they stand for the concerns and interest of millions of Nigerians.
Therefore they should be handled with caution. There is no need to cause problem where there is none. They should run after our real troublemakers and killers and kidnappers of the people.
I wish to call on all stakeholders in the Southwest to work together to save and protect its people from ruthless killings of their people. The Federal Government appears to not understand the feelings of the people.
Regrettably, the response to the Statement by Southern Governors, attributed to the presidency is to say the least insensitive and proven evidence that they would rather hold on to power than address the common needs of their people.
How on earth can the ban on open grazing be compared to motor spare-parts dealers living and doing their legitimate business in the northern part of Nigeria? When the Governors spoke, they spoke the minds of their people.
How can a call for the President to address the people take so long to come and when it did, it had no solution to the problem but compounded it by attempting to revert to an old route for bringing cattle to the South?
How can the business of a section of the society be allowed to override the collective security interest of the entire country? We call on the Buhari-led Federal Government to as a matter of urgency address the concerns of the people of this country instead of allow undue crisis to fester.”
Bishop Fagbemi who commended Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu for efforts being put in place to fight insecurity urged the governor to be more proactive in the ban of open grazing as herdsmen had disregarded the ban and had been moving their cows around again.
Speaking on the theme, the bishop of Owo Anglican Diocese called on Christians to bear fruits that would strengthen their relationship with God and make them good examples in the society.
In a remark, governor Akeredolu who commended the host of the synod, pastor and Mrs Toyin Tokunb, advocated consecration of women as priests in the Anglican church.
The Governor disclosed that there are more spirit-filled and better women to take up the task of priests particularly in this time and age, hence the need for Anglican church to move with the trend.