Scrap Pilgrims Board Now!!!
I sincerely commend Governor Willie Obiano for turning down the extravagant request of Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission for financial support for 2015 pilgrimage. I was proud of my governor as I watched him on Channels Television decline to sponsor pilgrims to Jerusalem with the scarce resources of Anambra State. His reasons were authentic. I wonder why any human being with common sense will subscribe to religious tourism in these austere times.
Worship your God in truth and in spirit in the confines of your country. It's arrant nonsense to transfer the financial responsibility of pilgrimage to state resources. Our Lord Jesus Christ declared that where two or three are gathered, there he is in their midst. The scripture is silent on religious pilgrimage to Jerusalem. We don't need to tour Jerusalem to practice our faith. Israel and Saudi Arabia are enjoying a peaceful and stable economy. Nigeria is experiencing the most grueling times in history. We lack the basic human needs in this country. We need more schools and hospitals to cater to the needs of our ever increasing population. Some state governments are still owing arrears of salaries. Why are we so much interested in boosting the tourism potentials of other countries at the expense of the government? Henceforth, any state government that engages in such frivolity will answer to Nigerian youths.
Nigeria is my own Jerusalem. Christ is here with me. Salvation is free but you must buy your bible. Intending pilgrims must foot their bills. Other governors in Nigeria should emulate Willie Obiano for having the political will to say no to religious tourism fanatics. What have we to show for all the resources we annually spend in Jerusalem and Mecca? What have we to show for all the monies expended on oversea training of government functionaries and senior civil servants? Religious tourism in Nigeria should be canceled if the Buhari led APC administration desires to be taken serious about the change mantra of fighting waste and corruption.
Christian leaders must rise up to the challenge of ensuring accountability and acting as a watch dog to persons in power. The era of Christian leaders licking leftovers from the tables of political leaders should come to an end. Pentecostal leaders must desist from portraying Christians as hungry wolves seeking for prosperity by every means available. They should stay away from the government houses if they don't have any useful advice to offer the occupants. Political leaders must be compelled to fulfill all promises made to the electorate during electioneering campaigns instead of going to beg cap in hand for financial support. Thank you Obiano for setting the ball rolling and happy 60th birthday anniversary.
Uzor Ngoladi is the author of Toxic Eucharist