Mr. Richard Akinnola, the Executive Director, Centre for Free Speech Organisation, has described the negative reactions generated over the decision of the Redeemed Christian Church of God [RCCG]to establish a Directorate of Governance and Politics, as mischievous and out-of-order.
Akinnola, a veteran journalist, author, lawyer and activist, opined that the criticism of the church was a ploy by certain ‘political actors’ to cause division within the “body of Christ”.
“In the run-up to the 2015 election, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was the running mate to President Muhammadu Buhari, but to the best of my knowledge, Pastor Enoch Adeboye did not at any time come out to ask members of his church to vote for Osinbajo, who is a senior pastor in the church.”
“Rather, you would all recall that Adeboye actually prayed for the then President Goodluck Jonathan who had come to him for his blessings right in the presence of Osinbajo,” he said.
Akinnola noted that politicians of different parties, regardless of political affiliations, did attend the RCCG, including Governors Samuel Ortom of Benue and Duoye Diri of Bayelsa – both of PDP.
“So, it is disingenuous for anyone to suggest that the memo of the RCCG on politics was targeted at garnering support for the presidential ambition of the vice president, a clarification which the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) and Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has made,” he added.
The recent decision by the RCCG management, through a memo, to create directorate of governance and politics in its churches nationwide recently sparked varied reactions among Nigerians, with some accusing the church of God of pandering to partisanship, a quality which many believed was a deviation to the Christendom and its ecclesiastical norms.