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JUNE 12: WE ARE ALL TO BLAME

COMMUNICATORS  murdered the  issue  of  June 12  because  when the deed was done, communicators did not  go  out  against  it," says Emeritus Archbishop Alaba Job.

Archbishop Job making this assertion on 13 June in a programme, "Rise and shine" said, "All the papers and all the radio and television stations carried  it  as  the  fairest  election,  but when  the  headship of the nation cancelled that election, Nigerians (as the communicators)  went   into  their shells."

Archbishop Emeritus Job hopes the recent talk about June 12 is not a gimmick; "it is not to gather votes in the coming national elections. I hope it is to re-enact the justice that was submerged in the past."

To the archbishop,  everything done to redress June 12 is "better late than never."

On youth participation and inclusiveness in government, Archbishop Job said, "Young people do not have money. It has not been removed from our constitution and the constitutions of our political parties that "they shall not demand money from those who want to run."

The retired archbishop, who was the youngest bishop in the world in 1974 (he was aged 33), said that he knew men and women who sold their property in order to win elections. And "when that is done, it means that we have given our votes to those who have bought us, not those who we voted for, not those we wanted to rule us."

Engaging the youth and making them relevant is the concern of many Nigerians, but political analysts see it as a lip-service on the part of government. The archbishop says, "Now, we are talking about the "Not too Young to Run” law. Let me speak my mind. I think it is a decoration. I wish everything was written to make it possible for young people to run. Young people do not have money. It has not been removed from our constitution and the constitutions of our political parties that they shall not demand money from those who want to run."

"We have many young people who have a lot to give, but who do  not  have the support of the naira. That point must be addressed."

Archbishop Job will not advocate for a two-party system; he stands for several party system because "some will fade away." His concern is that some politicians are being identified  with miscreants. "It is a big  shame  on this nation for someone to mention that he has thugs."

The archbishop, known for speaking truth to power said "that is what God created  us to do... so that we can enjoy everlasting happiness in heaven."

Archbishop Job has seen an "array of governors" (19 in all) since he came to Ibadan in January 1954, but "they've not been listening to the truth."

According to him, "some had been God-fearing, others had not been God-fearing." Truly, we (Nigerians) have not been listening to the truth because we have not served God appropriately."

He would not make a general statement on whether the Church as a body is not culpable in corruption.

"You want me to answer directly on culpability of the Church? No, the Church is not corrupt," he said.

 "Some members of the church are corrupt...our Head cannot be corrupt," asserting that a gathering of people with the name Christian is not necessarily the Church.

On Christians who have been indicted in government, Archbishop Job said that he was not proud of them. "How could I be proud of them? I do not reject them, but I am not proud of them. I pray for them that they should be better, that they shall be converted."

He saw them as the lost sheep and "we are to leave 99 to run after the one that is lost.”

 


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