An aide of President Muhammadu Buhari, Lauretta Onochie on Monday condemned statements credited to the presiding Bishop of Living Faith Church Worldwide (Winners Chapel), David Oyedepo, for rejecting a section of the Company and Allied Matters Acts (CAMA) on churches.
The Social Media Aide to the President, criticised Oyedepo for kicking against CAMA which was signed into law by Buhari on August 7, 2020. She told the cleric to go ahead and create his own country where he would apply and impose his own rules.
Oyedepo had, on Sunday in his sermon, questioned the application of CAMA in churches, criticising the rationality of the law which permits the Registrar-General of Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) and a supervising minister to strictly supervise religious bodies and charity organisations.
CAMA also gives the commission power to suspend the trustees of an association or a religious body and appoint an interim manager or managers to coordinate its affairs where it reasonably believes that there has been any misconduct or mismanagement, or where the affairs of the association is being run fraudulently or where it’s necessary or desirable for the purpose of public interest.
“The church is God’s heritage on earth. Molest the wife of somebody and you will see the anger of that person. The church is the bride of Christ. You know how a strong man is when you tamper with his wife. The church is the body of Christ. We are under obligation to give warnings to wicked rulers so we could be free from their blood.
“Who was Paul persecuting? The church! Who said, ‘I’m the one you are persecuting?’ Jesus! This country is going too far and it’s a risk. I saw something on CAMA and they put religious bodies there that Registrar-General can remove trustees without a recourse to the court. Don’t try it! You can’t gag anybody. We own this country together.
“The church works on the pattern delivered by God not the pattern of man. Government has no power to appoint people over churches. This is a secular nation. The church is the greatest asset of God in this country. Please be warned. Judgment is coming. The Lord says I have been still but now I will arise. Anybody that is in this deal is taking poison. This will never work. I am waiting for a day when anybody will appoint a trustee over this church.
“It is only in Africa that people who are over 80 years still run around to become president. I know that it is the prosperity of the church that is making them jealous. But I am going to live to see an army of many winners soar greater. In this church shall emerge one of the largest concentration of giants on earth,” Oyedepo said.
But, reacting to Oyedepo’s position, Onochie said: “I hope this is not true. If it is, Oyedepo will have to manufacture his own country and live by his own laws.
“As long as he lives and operates within the entity called Nigeria, he will live by Nigerian rules and laws. He will do as he’s told by the law.
“Enough of lawlessness”, she said.