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Continuation from: Chartered accountants versus economists

Continuation from: Chartered Accountants versus Economists

By Bashorun J.K. Randle

Indeed, this country deserves to be pitied!

From the archives:

When Egba women led by Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti (mother of Afro-beat legend Fela) formed the Abeokuta Women Union (AWU) and revolted against the King, Sir Ladapo Samuel Ademola, Alake of Egbaland, for conspiring with the Colonial Government to impose an oppressive tax regime on women, their war song, according to the BBC translation, was:

Read also: Chartered Accountants versus Economists

“Idowu (Alake), you have used your penis as a symbol of authority against us for ages under the pretext that you are our husband. The game is up. Now we have reversed the roles by weaponizing our vagina. We are set to overwhelm and subdue you. We are your dominant husband (master), and you have no choice but to succumb to our demands.”

The rage persisted until October 5, 1946, with furious petitions to the resident and the Colonial Office. On January 3, 1949, the British government caved in and forced the King to abdicate. He was succeeded by Oba Adesina Gbadebo (1963–1971). Sir Ladapo was sent into exile in Osogbo (Osun State), where he died on December 27, 1962.

Front page report of “Saturday Vanguard” newspaper:

Headline: “IN THE COURSE OF SHOOTING, I FELL DOWN; CORPSES FELL ON ME”

– Archbishop Chukwuma on how he escaped being killed at Asaba genocide

· Says Nigeria owes Asaba people easterners apology

· Talks about life in retirement

Emeritus Archbishop of Enugu Anglican Diocese, Most Rev. Prof. Emmanuel Chukwuma, who, penultimate week, retired from priesthood, speaks about his 44 years of priesthood, how he escaped the Asaba genocide, and what should be done for Nigeria to return to its lost glory.

Did you retire because of your age or years of service?

There is a statutory age in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria that says that once you are 70 years old, you retire. If you are a primate after 10 years, whether you are 70 or not, you retire. I am retiring as Archbishop with 10 years of experience. I was a second-term archbishop and, at the same time, retired at the age of 70 after serving as a bishop for 34 years, excluding my time in the priesthood. So, I’ve served as a priest for 44 years. I glorify and thank God for who I am today.

On his experience as a priest:

It has been a great and tremendous experience in the sense that I started as a bishop in the Diocese of Bauchi, in the in the northern part of Nigeria. I spent about eight years there and came to Enugu to spend 26 years there. I started as a missionary bishop in Bauchi, which was not an easy task. I started from nothing in a Muslim area; from 1990 to 1991, I experienced Christian and Muslim uproar, with our churches and houses burned and many of our members killed. I was the chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), and my life was at risk. At that time, God protected me. My cathedral in Bauchi was burned before I rebuilt it to a bigger one, and also through God, I founded churches in the whole of Bauchi and Gombe, Katagum, that’s the Azere area, and built a cathedral in Gombe; I founded churches in Ashaka up to Bilirri, Bollie, Dukuntim, Bambam, Maraba, and Ningi. I was busy planting churches that have now given birth to the Gombe Diocese.

Having built the Bishop’s Court in Bauchi, the Cathedral in Bauchi, and Gombe, I came to Enugu, and there was no Bishop’s Court. Thanks be to God for Bishop Otubelu, my predecessor, who also suffered because he started from the civil war in 1970, and with all these indigenes and non-indigenes syndromes, he couldn’t do much.

Read also: Continuation from: “Chartered Accountants versus Economists

However, coming to Enugu, through God’s grace and with the support of my friends and the people, I was able to build the Bishop’s Court, which is one of the best in Nigeria. The foundation was laid in 1999 by the then-prelate, Most Rev. Timothy Adetiloye. After that, I started with the cathedral and built it, and through God’s grace, it has been working. We mobilised funds and built a hospital, a diagnostic centre, schools, a printing press, an established microfinance bank, and churches all over the place.

We are also building a convent school. We began to expand the frontiers of Anglican Communion in Enugu State to the point that Enugu State now knows that Anglican Communion is really the place. So, we have a lot to thank God for—the priest, laity, and friends that supported us in the ministry. Sometimes some people can be so conspiring and treacherous, but many of them have repented and apologised.

So I’ve forgiven all those who offended me and those whom I offended through my work. Now, I’m happy to be retiring from Enugu Diocese, not as bad as I met it or as poor as I met it, and I feel fulfilled and thank God that I now have time to go and rest and establish a foundation for the poor, the less privileged, and widows so that I can help some people and do my lecturing.