By Ralph Madugu
The Church of the Brethren (EYN) has expressed worry over the current economic crises in the country.
According to the Church, Nigerians have never faced a rise in the prices of commodities as is currently obtains under the Buhari led administration.
Addressing delegates at the 75th Council meeting of the EYN at its Headquarters in Kwarhi, Adamawa State, EYN President, Rev. Joel S. Billi, lamented that while were facing dire economic hardships, some were busy stealing from the public treasury.
“As far as we are concern corruption is on the increase and that is the reason for most of our sufferings. Does it mean we cannot do anything about all these problems? the cleric queried.
The cleric noted that the current security situation in the country had “completely dilapidated,” adding that nothing seemed to improve as citizens had been abandoned in the hands of kidnappers, Boko Haram and ritual killers.
He added that Nigeria had never been “barbaric and in a state of anarchy like this. We are all witnesses of what our Church has been undergoing since 2008 to date. We have been crying every now and then but it seems our cries do not matter or make sense.
“If truly FG is fighting insurgency and uncovers the sponsors, why is the war endless and why not tell Nigerians who are the sponsors and should face the wrath of the law no matter who they are.”
The cleric called on the Federal Government to invite officials of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, to revisit the issues that led to the lingering strike that led to the shutting down of public universities.
Said he: “ASUUM strike has become recently more familiar than the National Anthem in the ears of Nigerians.
“The standard of our education has completely fallen down. Nigerians who are over sixty years will tell you that children of peasants attended the same schools with the children of Commissioners, Permanent Secretaries, Governors, Ministers and Traditional rulers. But what is it today? It is something that calls for a lamentation and mourning.
“There is a clear dichotomy between the children of the so-cslled wealthy people and the marginalized.
“They have made nonsense of the public schools, from primary schools to universities. Because they can afford private schools at all levels or send their children abroad. The few lucky remaining septuagenarians and octogenrians who went to school will tel you that the missionaries dispensed education to them equally irrespective of your parents’ status or religious affiliation.”
On the current Russia-Ukraine crisis, the Rev. Billi described the situation as “worrisome and disheartening” stating that no war is ever good.
According to him, the ongoing war is not only affecting Ukranians but the world over.
“Let us pray and ask God to change the heart of Vladmir Putin. It is really a massacre, as Pope Francis described or called it.
The EYN President listed the autonomy of newly approved Local Church Boards, ordination of new pastors as some of the successes recorded by the Church.
On the centenary of the Church, Rev. Billi appealed to members to fully participate in activities marking the centenary of EYN and donate towards the event.
While acknowledging the contributions of the various Church groups, the cleric said “We thank God for blessing our Church with all the church groups we have, we appreciate a great deal the tireless efforts of our group leaders in ensuring smooth running of the groups.
“The contributions of the church groups cannot be quantified. I pray you will always allow God to choose leaders after God’s own heart.” He however, charged them to shun all “unwholesome behaviours” that could be detrimental to the group and the church.