Anglican Primate Wants More Protection For Nigerians In Northeast

nicholas-okoh-anglican-primate-nigeriaThe Anglican Primate, Most Reverend Nicholas Okoh, is asking the Nigerian government and the Nigerian Army to intensify efforts in protecting Nigerians living in the volatile north east.

Most Reverend Okoh believes that such intensity in checking the activities of the Boko Haram in the region would quench renewed attacks by the terrorist group.

His request is coming amidst resurging suicide attacks in some communities in the northeast area after heightened counter-terrorism operations had decimated the sect that is pushing for the establishment of an Islamic State and an end to Western education in the region.

Addressing reporters after a Diocesan Confirmation Service in Abuja, Most Reverend Okoh stressed that the military must not relent in fighting insurgency.

He says it is obvious that Boko Haram terrorists have no plans of backing down and are intent on unleashing terror in the country.

“When this thing started, I did say that war against insurgency is not a 100 mitres dash. It is a marathon race. So, the country must be prepared. That is why when they put a date and say December (for end to activities of Boko Haram), I was not very enthusiastic because from experience, we know that terrorists are not people that will submit so easily.

“That will give you an indication that they are not ready to submit. If they are ready to submit, why did they not release the girls at once.

“They want to use the girls to continue to negotiate either for money or for their own people,” he said.

The Anglican Primate further expressed fears that displaced persons that had returned to their communities in the northeast were at risk of being attacked without adequate military protection.

“The people who are really in danger now are those displaced persons who have returned to their villages.

“We cannot be sure that Boko Haram will not emerge from here and there and attack them again.

“So, the government must continue to emphasise that there should be no relenting.

“The military must continue to do their very best to protect the people who have returned to the villages because Boko Haram is a battle that we don’t know when it will end,” he added.

With the fresh waves of suicide attacks by Boko Haram in communities in the northeast, analysts say Boko Haram is staging a fight-back after taking advantage of the rainy season to recoup.

Schoolgirls’ Rescue: Anglican Primate Commends Police

AnglicanThe Anglican Primate, Arch Bishop Nicholas Okoh, has commended the Governor of Lagos, Akinwunmi Ambode and the Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni for the rescue of the three girls abducted from Babington Macaulay Junior Seminary.

Arch Bishop Okoh, who led a delegation from the Anglican Church, praised the promptness of the rescue efforts for the abducted schoolgirls.

Describing his visit as a “thank you visit”, he told Channels TV that the Church was grateful for “what the Police has done under the leadership of the Governor of the state”.

“We believe that they have performed exceptionally well,” he said.

Speaking about the kidnap of the girls, he said, “I was very devastated because (they were) young women out in the cold day and night. We couldn’t sleep.

“So when we got the news that they have been rescued, we bounced back.”

He disclosed that the Anglican Church has since raised the standard of security at the school in terms of physical structure and also employed more security personnel to guard the school.

“We seek to work more closely with the Police and other security agencies,” he added.

In his reaction, the Commissioner of Police said that the visit was a morale booster which would encourage the Police to do more.

Ending Insurgency: Religious Leaders Give Recommendations  

Nicholas-Okoh-Muslim-ClericReligious leaders in Nigeria have suggested ways to end the Boko Haram insurgency in the country, cautioning that the military does not need a deadline to fight insurgency.

At a meeting attended by the Minister of Information, Islamic Cleric, Sheikh Muhammad Nuru Khalid, said that deadlines are not helpful anywhere in the world to fight insurgency.

With less than three weeks to the expiry date given by the Presidency to end Boko Haram insurgency, the cleric said that there was need for a review of approaches as it appeared the end is not in sight.

The Anglican Primate of the Church of Nigeria, Archbishop Nicholas Okoh, also noted that the message of peace should transcend mere talk to the people in the troubled north.

Although the cleric encouraged a regulation of preaching, especially in the troubled north, Archbishop Okoh said that the idea of developing a code of conduct for religious leaders should be treated with caution.

Nevertheless, the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed, urged the clerics to use their position and influence to drum up support in the war against insurgency.

It was unanimously agreed that taking the message of peace to the grassroots might bring the nation’s worst nightmare to an end.

Don’t Destroy Nigeria With Your Politics, Archbishop Warns Politicians

The Primate of the Anglican Church, Nicholas Okoh has warned Nigerian politicians to think of the survival of the country first while engaging in politicking.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s programme, View From The Top, Mr Okoh indicted the political class for the spate of insecurity in Northern Nigeria.

He said, “When you come to a point and begin to experience what you have not experienced before, then the time has come for everybody to look after what is more important. And in this case what is more important is the survival of this country.

“So whether you belong to party A, party B party C or whatever, the survival instinct suggests that we should ensure that the nation survives first so that we can have the arena for politics.”

Anglican Primate Says Prosperity Sermon Is ‘Half Truth’

The Primate of the Anglican Church of Nigeria, Nicholas Okoh has condemned the emergence of the ‘get rich quick’ sermon that is the rave of most Pentecostal Churches in the country.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s programme, View From The Top, Mr Okoh said this was not the foundation that was laid by the missionaries who introduce Christianity in Nigeria.

He described as half-truth these sermons by pastors whose aim is for their personal advancement and enrichment.

The Primate said, “It’s not part of the way we started, it was not part of what the missionaries delivered to us, but all of a sudden the teachings on ‘if you follow me you will become wealthy’, ‘If you follow me within six months, you don’t have a Mercedes, then that is not my God’ ‘You either change the church or the church will change you’ something like that.

“At best this is half-truth, in the sense that it is true that God is the owner of everything, God is the owner of the universe, the oil we are harvesting in Nigeria and selling internationally market everywhere and making billions out of it is God’s property so God is rich, stupendously rich so his children are rich also, we are princes, we are princesses, but that does not mean there are no moral underpinnings, everything is ok and people can even steal and do thanksgiving you know is not right”

He said, “so I think that to counter this kind of thing, religious preachers and teachers must preach what is noble, what is helpful, what can build a being, what is realistic, what is biblically acceptable.”

Peace Must Never Be Accepted On Boko Haram’s Term – Anglican Primate

The Anglican Primate, Most Reverend Nicholas Okoh has urged the federal government’s committee on dialogue and amnesty for Boko Haram not to accept peace on Boko Haram’s terms as he demanded justice for all the Christians that have been killed in the sect’s insurgency.

Addressing the third session of the eight synod of the Anglican Church in Abuja, Most Reverend Okoh said it’s a pitfall that must be avoided by the committee because it would inadvertently create an Islamic state in the northern part of the country.

Most Reverend Okoh also added that a public discussion should have been held before the amnesty committee was set up.

He urged northern elders and leaders to protect the lives and properties of people of other faiths.

Anglican Primate Insists On Anti-Gay Stand

The Church of Nigeria Anglican Communion has announced its opposition to the decision of the Church of England saying gay clerics can become bishops so long as they remain sexually abstinent.

Making this known today in Lagos, the Primate of the Church of Nigeria, the Most Reverend Nicholas Okoh, insists that the anti-gay stand of the Church of Nigeria Anglican Communion remains unchanged.