By O’star Eze
The Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rev Paulinus Ezeokafor has warned the Nigerian government of impending economic and security doom if she does not rise to her responsibilities.
Addressing a cross section of journalists, Thursday, December 24, during his customary end of year media chat, Bishop Ezeokafor highlighted the need for reconciliation with God and our fellow humans as the ideal way to celebrate the Christmas.
He however went on to warn the federal government to quickly look for alternatives to the nation’s crude oil based economy.
Thanking God for making it possible for those who are alive to be part of the Christmas and New Year especially in the light of the scourge of the Covid 19, the Bishop said;
“Life is the most important thing man has. Therefore we have every reason to thank him and pray him to sustain us.
“It is better we go back to understand the reason for the celebration as the euphoria make people to forget.”
“Christmas came about as a result of the failure of our first parents who lost friendship with God. Therefore he sent his son, in Love to reconcile us back to God.
“We are celebrating the love of God for us. It is natural for reconciliation to happen in earthly families when there is a new birth.”
“Our celebration will be spiritual and material. In the spiritual side, we reconcile our hearts with God. In the physical part, we reconcile with our neighbours. And also we need to share what we have. If I love you, I’ll do all I can to make you comfortable. The lover always wants the best for the loved. And when you do this, the love will come back to you.”
“There is a tendency for people to think that every Christmas will be the last. But it is not so. I do not think the world is going to end in our lifetime.
“There will be demands after the Christmas celebration so we need to be careful the way we spend.
“We pray that the new year has less problems than the one we are exiting.”
“As a nation, we need to be very watchful. Many countries cannot deny of going into recession. Our currency is devaluating. This affects market price. This alongside the issues that came with the Covid 19 is bound to affect us all.
“The poor suffer such situation the most. Our economy will get better i pray. Our mono economy dependent on oil is not helping matters. The price of oil has gone down. Developing countries are also developing vehicles that are independent of crude oil.
This country should be planning alternatives to oil based economy as it is heading to extinction. If we do not make hay while the sun shines, we are going no where.
New technologies are coming and we need to do everything we can to keep our country relevant. We know there are other natural resources in the country but unfortunately it is being used for just a section of the nation. This is not fair.
“Agriculture must be taken more seriously. Also we need to emphasis local production of all things. “Let Nigerians be encouraged to produce their rice and make it cheaper. Closing borders is not the answer as no country can produce all it needs.”
Speaking on security situation in the country, Bishop emphasized that the fundamental responsibility of a government is to protect the people.
“And when she fails she should resign. But in this country, people do not resign.
“The service chiefs appointed by the presidency have shown that their efforts are not good enough and therefore should have resigned by now. New brooms sweep better,”he quipped.
He referred to the massive kidnappings that have been carried out lately and stated it is preposterous for over 300 school boys to be kidnapped and there would be no trace of them. He suggested that the kidnap looked stage managed.
“Some people are feeding on the insecurity of the country,” the bishop alleged. He therefore reiterated to the government that the masses are not comfortable with the security situation in the country and they need to do something about it.
“If these things are not checked, gradually it will continue to erode our society,” he warned.
He also called for the urgent need to drastically reduce the cost of governance, and stop mortgaging the future of our young people.
The bishop also emphasized the need for Covid 19 preventive measure to be taken seriously as it is indeed real.