The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has reportedly rejected the Allied Matters Act, 2020, “reasons being that it would reduce the esteem of the church and rank the church as a secular institution under secular control.
The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), had on August 7 signed into law, the Companies and Allied Matters Bill, 2020. The bill which has been passed by the National Assembly replaced the 1990 CAMA.
The Christian body described the section 839 (1) and (2) of the law as satanic which reveals that the Supervising minister has the power to suspend trust worthy members of the church’s association.
He also has the power to appoint other interim managers to manage the affairs of association for some given reasons regardless of what the association holds as independent leadership.
It was previously noted down by the Nigerian news agency that the president of living faith church “Winners Chapel” in the person of Bishop David oyedepo had early asked the government to remove the part of the law that gives the minister the power to remove the board of trustees of churches without recourse to the court.
In a statement signed on Thursday by Adebayo Oladeji, Special Assistant on Media and Communications to CAN President, Rev Samson Ayokunle, the association noted that the Federal Government had declared WAR on the church if it goes ahead to implement the decision.
The statement which was titled “Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) rejects CAMA Completely” had visible reasons why the law should not be implemented.
The statement reads thus –
The leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria rejects outrightly the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 that was assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari recently.
“The law, to say the least, is unacceptable, ungodly, reprehensible, and an ill-wind that blows no one any good. It is a time bomb waiting to explode.
“While we are not against the government fighting corruption wherever it may be found, yet we completely reject the idea of bringing the church, which is technically grouped among the NGOs, under control of the government. The Church cannot be controlled by the government because of its spiritual responsibilities and obligations.”
CAN queried, “How can the government sack the trustee of a church which it contributed no dime to establish? How can a secular and political minister be the final authority on the affairs and management of another institution which is not political? How can a non-Christian head of government ministry be the one to determine the running of the church? It is an invitation to trouble that the government does not have power to manage.”
It advised the government to “face the business of providing infrastructure for the people and not meddling in the affairs of an organized body.
Let them focus on better health provision, food, education, adequate security employment, etc. The government should not be a busy body in a matter that does not belong to it. The government does not have the technical expertise to run the church of God because of its spiritual nature.”
“If the government is bent on imposing a law on us which the entire Church in Nigeria is against, then, they have declared war on Christianity and the agenda to destroy the Church which we have spoken against before now is coming to the open more clearly. If you cannot give us good amenities of life, we would not allow you to take away our liberty to worship our Maker,” it vowed.
CAN, therefore, called on Buhari to “stop the implementation of the obnoxious and ungodly law until the religious institutions are exempted from it” and “return the law to the National Assembly for immediate amendment.”