President of the Christ Apostolic Church Nigeria and Overseas, Pastor Samuel Oladele has said it will be wrong and unethical for a northerner to seek to become Nigeria’s president in 2023.
He made the submission at a press conference today September 23 to kick off the annual pastor’s Conference of the church. The Conference is being held at Ikeji Arakeji, Osun State.
Oladele who cited the unwritten zoning agreement among the political class; insisted that any northerner who attempts to run for the presidency in 2023 does not love Nigeria.
He said, “In a country like ours with so many religious and ethnic nationalities, we can not do away with zoning. It has always been like that. The presidency should rotate between the North and the South. That’s not a perfect arrangement either Talking about the North, it is not one. The South is also not one either. To allow for peace to reign in this country, I want to say that anybody among the Northerners hitching towards clinching the Presidency again in 2023 after General Mohammadu Buhari does not love this country.”
While observing that the South is not in short supply of good leaders, he said, “For the North to have occupied the seat for eight years and now saying it should go back there again is not going to help this country at all. Zoning or rotation is the best thing for a country like ours. If anybody from the north says he is going to contest for that presidency again in 2023, that person doesn’t love this country at all. What has been helping us is the rotation of the presidency.”
Buhari a big disappointment
Oladele who became CAC president on March 20 2021 also took a swipe at President Buhari describing him as a disappointment. He recalled the euphoria that greeted his ascension to power stating however that the Buhari in government is totally different from the Buhari people had expected.
Still on Buhari, Pastor Oladele said, “As a person, I used to have a great deal of respect for him even when he didn’t win the election. In 2011, I persuaded some friends to vote for him. I voted for him in 2011 when he didn’t win. In 2015 when he won, I wasn’t in the country, when we received the news that President Jonathan had conceded victory to him, we all shouted and jumped for joy.
“Like most Nigerians who admired him, we had high expectations of his performance and turning things around; judging by his antecedent and his profile as a former head of state during the military era. But he has disappointed everybody who once loved and admired him because what is happening in Nigeria today defies logic.”
He decried the spate of killings and terrorism in the country; insisting that the president should be blamed for the ills in the country because the buck stops at this table.
“Whether he likes it or not, President Buhari has God to give account to at the end of the day. God may be using him to punish us, (though that is still in the realm of conjecture). But President Buhari has a duty as a leader,” he said
According to Pastor Oladele, it is left for President Buhari to disabuse the minds of people that he meant well for the country and not dance to the ethnic tune that he has been accused of “The onus is on him as a leader to come out and say, ‘I was elected on the platform of all Nigerians. I am not a Fulani President, I am a President for all Nigerians’. The moment he became the President, what he said then, he should put to practice: “I am for everybody, I am for nobody,” the cleric said.
Oladele: Nigerians should examine themselves
The CAC president however called on Nigerians to also examine themselves.
He opined, “But sometimes I have a rethink. I think the time has come to turn the searchlight on ourselves and leave General Buhari alone for now. It has been said that a nation deserves the type of leader that it gets. What is wrong with us as a people? Is General Buhari our problem? Maybe I may be wrong, could it be God’s own way of punishing us as a people?
“The Bible says righteousness exalts a nation sin is a reproach to any people. Proverbs 14: 34. If we have a man like Buhari on top of the affairs of this country, in a way, don’t we think it’s because we deserve him? Again the Bible says: “I gave them a king in my wrath” Maybe God is angry with us. There have been so many messages coming to us as a people to change our ways; to change our lifestyles from excessive desire for materialism, corruption is now endemic and it cuts across all the strata of this country; where do we go?
On the cry for restructuring and self-determination, the CAC president said what is presently on the ground in the southwest gives little hope that there will be any change if the region is allowed to become a nation.
He submitted, “I love to see the Yoruba nation carved out of Nigeria if that would solve all our problems, but would that be the solution? If we have that nation today, are we going to see less injustice, less corruption, less unrighteousness? I would have been more than eager if the spate of robbery, corruption and of murder, and of ritual killings are not that rampant in the South West as it is in any other part of the country.
“Where then is our salvation? I think we need to turn the searchlight on ourselves. We have to go back to the Bible that says: “Righteousness exalts a nation” until we return to the path of righteousness, we may never have a good leader. If we have any at all he may become a scourge against us. God is not happy with us. God knows that we are bad, we are corrupt and it has become a kind of culture among us.
“Maybe we should not just be heaping all the blames on the President of the country. What happens in every local government, in every ward, in every street, and in every home? So, could Buhari be God’s own way of telling us that we are not right with Him?”
The cleric said further that “there are natural virtues which in Yoruba we call “Omoluabi”, these are virtues that are our way of life that propels us to be good to ourselves and the larger society. If only that is restored then would our society or our nation return to the path of normalcy, peace, and progress? Those things that are inherent in the Omoluabi way of life are even much better than what we have in religious circles today. If only we can just practise that Omoluabi principles, our country will be better.”
He argued that Nigeria is not a nation but rather a contraption since a nation is “a group of people speaking the same language, having the same aspiration, the same culture and so and so forth.”
There is nothing wrong according to him “if the Yoruba nation goes on its own. But if what we are witnessing today in the hands of our politicians is what is going to happen then, what is the need for us having a new nation?” he asked.
The church leader believes Nigeria is not practicing true federalism citing the debate on Value Added Tax collection as unnecessary in the first place.
“In the first place, it shouldn’t have been the Federal Government collecting all these taxes; more so that all of these revenues are generated from a geographical part of the country and they are being used to finance some other parts of the country that are not that productive. That’s not how things should be.”
He called on the Church to look up to God who is able to save “As humans, we like to place our faith in people, in the system, in the institution, in our military and economic might and so on and so forth. But God says: “Look unto me”