Journalism of Courage

Nigerians are getting poorer, feeling hopeless and helpless – Cardinal Onaiyekan

Says Nigeria dancing on the brink of chaos’  

The Cardinal John Onaiyekan, has warned that Nigeria stands at the brink of chaos with the current situation in the country.  He made the statement at the 2019 Presidential Inauguration Inter-Denominational Church Service with the theme: “Setting the Nation on Higher Levels of Peace and Development in the Fear of God.”

The truth is that the nation is not in a state for us to rejoice, he said. He added that the ranks of the poor are swelling by the day, hopeless and helpless, as they watch in frustration the affluence of the very few cruising in a different world.

He noted that “Such wide socio-economic disparity has led to anger, tension, violence and outright criminality in the land. All is not well.”

“This is no time for celebration of victory or for lamentation over defeat. Rather, it is time to pull efforts together, with the grace of God, to tackle the serious challenges before us.”

“At this moment, we would do well to acknowledge our failure to do things in the right way. Here the words of the psalmist should challenge each of us: “If you Oh Lord should mark our guilt, who would survive?” The blame game of pointing accusing fingers at others will not carry us far. For a positive change to take place, we must all be ready for a sincere change of heart, from the lowest to the highest, but especially at the highest levels. Empty boasts and bare-face denial of the realities around us cannot  build a nation.

“We are in the house of God, and before God we must tell the truth. The Lord Jesus has told us that “The Truth will make us free.” The truth is that our nation is not in a state for us to rejoice. The ranks of the poor are swelling by the day, hopeless and helpless, as they watch in frustration the affluence of the very few cruising in a different world. Such wide socio-economic disparity has led to anger, tension, violence and outright criminality in the land. All is not well.

“But all is not lost either. As we embrace a new term of government, it should be for us a new opportunity to change ways and review habits of governance, for a better Nigeria. We can and we should do this. God has endowed us with adequate resources to achieve this, resources that we unfortunately turn into crises and problems. Ethnicity and religion are two cases in point.”

This is even as the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, has noted that Christians are to take the lead in giving hope to others.

Former Head of State, Yakubu Gowon urged Nigerians to pray for President Buhari and all the leaders so that they will give good governance and look after the interest of all Nigerians, irrespective of tribe, faith or believe. 

He further urged Nigerians to “love your country and defend it in whatever way we can. Let us have peace in the land and let us ensure that this nation continues to survive to eternity, God being our helper.”

Justice John Isoho took the first reading from Habakkuk 3:16-19

Deputy senate president, Ike Ekweremadu took the second reading from Revelation 4:1-11

Music was provided by CAN Mass Choir, Abuja Tenor and Solomon Langa.

Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha; Head of Service, Mrs. Winifred Oyo-Ita;  Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele; Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi; Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh; as well representatives of the Military and Police chiefs; diplomats; senior government officials and delegations of various churches and christian denominations across Abuja and the country.

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