The Archbishop of the Ecclesiastical Province of Lagos, His Grace, Dr Olusina Fape, has assured Nigerians that the economic downturn currently facing the country would soon be a thing of the past if the nation’s leaders set their priorities right.
He also urged Nigerian leaders to emulate the virtues of Chief Obafemi Awolowo and those of HID which endeared them to the people.
He said this in his short sermon during the order of Holy Communion Service for the first posthumous birthday of the co-founder of the African Newspapers of Nigeria (ANN) Plc, Chief (Mrs) Hannah Idowu Dideolu Awolowo, held at the family chapel, Ikenne -Remo, on Friday.
Fape explained that the country had all it takes to be economically viable, and urged the leaders to put the interest of the masses at heart.
The cleric said that some nations of the world had at some points in their history, passed through these difficult times and survived it, because their leaders were not self-centered.
“Recession is not a new thing. It has always been there from time immemorial, but at this period, we can only look upon God. At this time, God still has a way of ministering to his people, and people should not because of recession be doing somethings that are immoral.
“Other nations had been in economic recession and they came out of it. I believe that with the dedication of our leaders, by placing our priorities right, we will come out of it very soon.
“If we are less concerned with ourselves, just like the sages of the old, just like Pa. Obafemi Awolowo and other political icons of this nation, who fought very well for this nation, definitely, we will overcome this period. The country has all that it takes to be an economically viable nation.
“The welfare of those they are governing should be uppermost in the minds of leaders. If some of our leaders are thinking about those people they are serving, they won’t want to be appropriating billions of naira to themselves and put those people at their mercy.
“We have all that it takes to make Nigeria a great nation, so our leaders should be more concerned on the welfare of the people that elected them, to be what they are, “ he added.
The Bishop of Remo, who took the text of his message from the book of Luke Chapter 1 verse 28, said Mama was a blessed woman and mother like the biblical Virgin Mary, mother of Jesus.
He said that no one would believe that the late HID Awolowo could be known to the world, being the only child of her mother with a humble beginning.
Fape added that the Yeye Oodua was a blessing to her generation which according to him, made her to be a reference point to her generation.
He added, “Who will ever believe that a single child of her mother, later became a mother of five children, and 11 grandchildren and many great grandchildren. Who will ever believe that single child of a humble background, would be the cynosure of all eyes, as the wife of the best politician Nigeria has ever produced. Although, Papa Obafemi Awolowo, did not govern Nigeria as a president, yet politicians till today and even till tomorrow, have always canvassed to rule this nation by the political ideologies of the sage. Whether they knew the vision, or not is another issue entirely.
“We are celebrating HID Awolowo today, even though called home almost at 100. Who will ever think that the woman born of the humble background will become a reference point in the politics of the country, today.
“She was a blessing to her generation and she would continue to be a blessing through the HID Awolowo Anglican Church, a living monument. The church exists today through her to bring the message of salvation to those that have been saved. Of all the contributions that Mama made in her lifetime, the one that has eternal dividend is the church.
We thank God for the day she was born and we will continue to celebrate this day”, he said.
The ceremony was attended by Mama’s children, Rev (Mrs) Omotola Oyediran and Ambassador (Dr) Olatokunbo Awolowo Dosumu, Mrs Wemimo Anifowose (grandchild).
The Alakenne of Ikenne-Remo, Oba Adeyinka Onakade and his wife, former Editor-In-Chief of ANN Plc, Mr. Folu Olamiti, Consultant, Dr. Segun Olatunji, Managing Director/EIC, ANN Plc, Mr Edward Dickson, Honourable Omosanya Solaja, among others, were also in attendance.