February 20, 2024
Catholic Bishops: Govt has failed on security, economy, others

Catholic Bishops: Govt has failed on security, economy, others

Nigeria’s Catholic Bishops have charged the Federal Government with failing to uphold its duty to protect the lives and property of its citizens.

The CBCN President and Secretary, Rev. Lucius Ugorji and Rev. Donatus Aihmiosion, respectively, signed the seven-point communique entitled “The Threshold of a New Dawn in Nigeria” at the conclusion of their second plenary meeting, which was made available to news media in Orlu yesterday.

“We continue to denounce the deteriorating level of insecurity in our country, as well as the actions of terrorists and rebels, kidnappers and robbers,” the bishops declared. Cybercrimes and armed robberies have persisted unabatedly.

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Attacks on travelers and those attending services in churches and other houses of worship have gotten out of hand. An example is the recent mass shooting and bombing at St. Francis Catholic Church in Owo, Ondo State on Pentecost Sunday, June 5, 2022, which resulted in the deaths of 41 worshipers and the serious injury of 70 more.

“All of these have caused a constant loss of life and the devastation of innocent people’s property. We offer our sincere condolences to everyone who has experienced a loss and we pray for the deceased’s eternal rest.

Unfortunately, the government has fallen short of its obligations in terms of security. We note that even after suspects have been detained, there is not even rigorous pursuit of those responsible for these evil deeds, leaving the populace defenseless and dejected.

“We continue to urge civil authorities to uphold their constitutional duty to protect Nigerians’ lives and property, and we urge everyone to make their homes and places of business more secure. We urge all citizens to uphold the law, exercise caution, and abstain from all types of violence and wrongdoing.

The Bishops focused on the country’s economic situation, saying: “Despite our vast human and natural resources, there is poverty and hunger in our land because of mismanagement and a failing economy with an ever-growing debt burden.

“Spiraling inflation, excessive prices for goods and services, skyrocketing unemployment, crude oil theft, and inoperable refineries have caused the populace enormous pain. Governments have also turned to needless borrowing, endangering the welfare of both current and future generations.

Additionally, due to the state of our economy, a large portion of our human capital—particularly professionals and skilled laborers—have left the country in quest of “greener pastures.”

In order to eliminate poverty, insecurity, and unrest in the country, the clerics asked the government to implement appropriate policies and create a climate that will encourage the development of more jobs by both the public and private sectors.

The Academic Staff Union of Universities’ (ASUU) lengthy industrial action was deemed “inappropriate” by the Catholic Bishops.

In their own words: “The Academic Staff Union of Universities’ (ASUU) ongoing strike, which began on February 14, 2022, is intolerable. The culprit, according to ASUU, is the Federal Government’s failure to carry out agreements.

“We are aware that efforts have been made to find a solution. We do, however, think that going to court may not be the best and quickest option to resolve the issue.

We therefore reiterate our request to the Federal Government and ASUU to find a more expeditious and effective means of resolving the issues at hand so that public universities can reopen.

The Bishops made the following statements regarding the Church, politics, and the general welfare of the populace: “The Church teaches that politics is for the common good, in which it finds its full justification and meaning, as well as the source of its intrinsic legitimacy.

Political power must therefore be used for the benefit of the whole and within the bounds of morality.

“The Church is not affiliated with, nor is she obligated to, any political party out of respect for all of God’s children.

However, the Church does not view the development and actions of the political community in a neutral or indifferent manner.

“We exhort our Catholic lay faithful to prepare themselves for political activity and, forgetting their convenience and material interests, to engage in political activity in pursuit of the common good and the establishment of the moral order, especially those with talents for the difficult but noble art of politics or whose talents in this matter can be developed.

Catholic Bishops: Govt has failed on security, economy, others

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