The Poppycock That APC Is An “Islamic” Party
I Okoi Obono-Obla , a Christian and Ethnic EKOI from Cross River State of Nigeria in the South/South Region was one of the Co-Secretary of the Joint Inter Party Merger Committee that negotiated the formation of the All Progressives’ Congress (APC) in 2013.
This Committee sat in the House of Chief Tom Ikimi, (a staunch Roman Catholic Christian) in Maitama, Abuja from February-June, 2013 to build a consensus among the opposition political parties (ACN, ANPP, CPC and factions of APGA and DPP) that resulted in the merger of these political parties to form APC.
Undoubtedly the APC is a Pan National Progressive Political Party made up of all Nigerians. It is made up of Muslims, Christians and Traditionalist. It is composed of Nigerians from every ethnic group that made up this mosaic complexity called Nigeria.
It goes without saying that the invidious propaganda by apologists of the PDP and the prevailing decadent Social, Economic and Political Order in the country that the APC is “Islamic” Party or ““Hausa” or “Northerner” Party or “Yoruba” Party is not but tommyrots, poppycock, hogwash, blustery and pernicious.
Kindly read what the distinguished and renowned Professor of Virologist and former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Professor Tam David-West said concerning the lie that APC is an Islamic Party and that it is planning to Islamise Nigeria thus:
“APC Islam (Muslim) Party
Once again because of their laziness to do reasonable research, the anti-Buhari lied again. Some of them apparently believe that their social status, great learning and decora¬tions for achievement are in themselves ad¬equate to sanctify any lie they conveniently feed society. Wrong. Suicidal. Falsehood cannot reign for ever or even for long.
The facts: National Chairman of APC, Christian. Of the two national Deputy Chair¬men, one is a Muslim, the other, Christian. APC has six National Vice-Chairmen representing the six geopolitical zones. Four are Christians. The one for the North East (Christian) was personally sponsored by Buhari himself.
For PDP, the National Chairman is Muslim. Its National Organising Secretary is Muslim, National Vice-Chairmen two Muslims, two Christians.
From the above facts, which party, APC or PDP is more Muslim in its organogram?
Section 10 of the Constitution
Prohibition of state religion clearly makes it difficult to Islamize or Christianize Nige¬ria. Any major change of the Constitution can only be possible if 24 states (2/3 of 36) Houses of Assembly approve.
Now, of the 36 states we have 19 (North) and 17 (South).
Furthermore, since Independence we have had 14 Heads of State: 8 Muslim; 6 Christians. If we add Zik it will be 15: 8 Muslims, 7 Christians. Shonekan is also added without prejudice.
No Head of State/Government can Is¬lamize Nigeria or Christianize Nigeria. Such speculations are necessarily empty or sterile. Convenient political red herring. Stupid. Our problem is neither from Mecca nor from Rome. Nigeria’s problems are Nigerians themselves. Simpliciter. When Babangida (not Buhari) surreptitiously wanted to smuggle Nigeria into OIC (Organisation of Islamic Conference) the heat of protest was so much, the Army General Dictator, was forced to pipe down. His political father, Sultan Dasuki, the Supreme Head of Nige¬rian Muslims was unable to save him (Ref. Daily SUN editorial 21 June 2005 page 8).”
Professor Tam David-West is from Rivers State. He is a staunch Christian and an Ethnic Minority. He has a long and distinguished Christian Pedigree and background dating to more than 100 Years.
Again, Professor Tam David West pungently, truthfully, convincingly and forcefully wrote thus:
“My religious pedigree
I have a Christian (Anglican) pedigree of over 100 (106) years at least. I am in fact, a Fundamentalist Anglican. Both my paternal and maternal grandfathers, High Chief David-West (Fubara) and High Chief Kio Dick Harry (Tiriah) were pioneer Christians ain the Kalabari Kingdom, sometimes at great personal risk. The early Christian missionaries were, as expected, not welcome. They left to avoid trouble.
High Chief (Opu-alabo) David-West personally went to plead with Bishop Dandeson Samuel Ajayi Crowther to return to Kalabari. The Bishop was reluctant. It was my paternal grandfather who eventually convinced the Bishop to change his mind. It took David-West four such visits. Compromise solution. The Bishop will be his personal guest, friend and will stay with him in his house. All security guaranteed. Bishop Dandeson agreed to the terms. He started the church (now St Michael’s Anglican Church) at the ground floor of David-West’s two-storey building.
David-West later complained to the Bishop that he was not comfortable having God downstairs and he upstairs. The Bishop failed to convince him that God is everywhere. Omnipresent. Compromise: David-West had to put up a bungalow at the entrance to the David-West’s compound for the church. This is where the present elegant Cathedral of St. Michael’s Church stands. He also ordered for the church bell from London and also built the first belfry. All these were in 1908.
I continue to thank Chief (Dr.) Lulu-Barango for showing me written church records of 1925 to authenticate these. There many more about David-West and the Church. He passed on January 17, 1925.
My maternal grandfather, Opu-alabo Tiriah, along with few other chiefs founded the Our Saviour’s African Church. This was in 1913. He was also a leading member of the famous Bishop Garrick Braide’s Pentecostal Church. The torch of Christianity has been passed on from generation to generation in the family. It will so continue by His Special Divine Grace.
Why the above religious pedigree? Simple. If I ever suspect, even with the slightest evidence that Buhari is anti-Christian, I will NEVER, NEVER, NEVER have anything to do with him. Metaphorically, I will borrow winged legs from the Greek, Fidipedis, and run away from him very fast.
Things about religion go deep into one’s bone marrows, those of politics only end on the epidemis.
Buhari, is never anti-Christians as addressed in this discourse.
I was on the choir of St. Michaels Church, Buguma.
I have been invited to lead religious fellowships in Nigeria and abroad.
I have preached the sermon on Sunday at the Vom (Plateau State) Church (1962). I have also preached at a Methodist Church in the United States; I was also guest speaker at Oregon, also in U.S. Along with the famous Reverend Martin Luther King, I was also Guest Speaker at the 18th Christian Ecumenical World Congress at Athens, Ohio, United States. All these were during my student days in the US. 1958-1962.
King was assassinated before I could honour his invitation to visit his church. May his soul rest in perfect peace with the Almighty. Amen.
Finally, none of the vociferous loud-mouthed , dark hearted anti Buhari can boast of religious pedigree as rich as mine. They cannot , as the saying goes , be more Roman Catholic than the Pope, Buhari is not, never , anti –Christian.
Let me conclude by appealing to all that in 2015 our different religious ethics should be paramount in our mind in voting for the President (and also other officers).
Aspirants throwing money around are public thieves, looters. The bribe money they offer is public money (our money) recycled to corrupt us for their selfish ends. Why should one take all the trouble to buy votes to enable them serve the public? Hidden Agenda to mega loot if elected . Let’s say NO NO NO.
“ The universe would not be rich enough to buy the vote of an honest man” (St.Gregory).
And, “ An honest man is the noblest work of God” (Alexander Pope).
Professor Tam David-West
Ibadan, November, 2014 “
It is worthy to note that Professor Tam David-West was also a member of the Joint Inter Party Merger Committee. Professor David-West has spoken.
I therefore urge all Nigerians from all ethnic and religious backgrounds never to allow charlatans, ungodly, corrupt, wicked, hypocritical and mischievous politicians to use religion and ethnicity to divide them while they steal and siphon our money to western capitals, Dubai and the United States of America.
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