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Clergy urges Nigerian leaders to be more prudent, compassionate to the masses

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By Ruth Oginyi

Bishop of Anglican Diocese of Afikpo in Ebonyi State, Rev. Paul Udogu, Saturday called on government at all levels in the country to be prudent to the suffering and welfare of the masses.

The Bishop spoke at the 5th Synod of the Church held at the Church Cathedral in Afikpo, Afikpo North Local Government Area of the State.

Bishop Udeogu stressed that the present Nigerian economy was biting hard on individual businesses and organisations with the government not doing anything to address the problem.

He noted that the rate of inflation in the country was shocking with the masses suffering it.

According to him, “Price of essential commodities changes per minute. The price of foodstuff, cement, and other building materials, petrol is on the increase. This has made life difficult and unbearable; many Nigerians lost their businesses and their investment and plans were rendered useless.

Naira has continued to lose value in the international market as the government continues to borrow money from foreign countries and agencies.

Civil servants monthly take-home salary cannot take them half the month in the face of rising prices of consumable commodities. Many Nigerians cannot eat three times daily let alone afford good medical treatment. The cases of people slumping and dying are now prevalent in our society,” he said.

He said it is troublesome, the rise in insecurity in the country, and that if nothing was done to address it, Nigeria will become a failed State like Somalia.

The clergy emphasised that virtually no region in the country today is safe.

“Everywhere, is completely engulfed with mayhem. The recent attack on the governors of Benue, Borno and Imo states with the daily bandit attacks on communities and kidnapping of school children and youth in the tertiary institutions in the North and the raping and molestation of our women by terrorist herdsmen are unacceptable.

He further said, “There is fear everywhere. Sadly enough, we heard that some Schools in some parts of Northern Nigeria are being closed down for fear of kidnappers. Southeast was turned into another North East as unknown gunmen almost paralysed life and economic activities and soldiers and security men that were brought to maintain peace and order, added to the pains of the common man as many people were maltreated and some were falsely tagged IPOB/ESN members and were arrested and killed”.

He decried the high rate of unemployment in the country, adding that, yearly, tertiary institutions graduate thousands of students without the government making any plan to absorb them into the labour force. 

“Many of our brilliant youths/graduates are unemployed. This has led many of them to engage in social vices such as 419 or Yahoo-Yahoo business, kidnapping, banditry, and terrorism because an idle finger is the workshop of the devil. We are yet to see the millions of jobs this present government promised Nigerians during the electioneering campaign. The #EndSars protest by our youth has come and gone, yet our government has refused to learn lessons from that”, the cleric submitted.

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