The Battle Between The Church VS The State Gets Messier.
The First Amendment law of America does not only allows citizens the freedom to practice any religion of their choice, but also prevents the government from officially recognizing or favoring any religion. And Nigeria I believe has the same official position but for some sentiments by occupants of various offices.... (Toney Etido)
View pictures in App save up to 80% data. The feud between Christ Embassy Church, Akwa Ibom State chapter and the Akwa Ibom State government over Covid19-compliance monitoring team is getting messier by the day with the church filing a suit at the High Court of Uyo against the State. As of the time of filing in this report, frantic efforts to get the State’s Christian Association Chairman (CAN) to furnish us with his own account of what trespassed on Sunday when Government/CAN Covid19 monitoring team visited the Church on Sunday to monitor compliance proved abortive, as the CAN chairman wasn’t answering his calls.
Report has it that the Akwa Ibom State’s CAN and Government’s monitoring team, under the leadership of Rev. Dr. Ndueso Ekwere acted beyond its boundaries by slapping the Church cameraman, and confiscating the camera which would have had the true evidence of what trespassed at the church when the monitoring team visited the church on Sunday to monitor compliance. We also gathered from a very reliable source that the State’s Pastor of Christ Embassy, Pastor Effiong, whose Church where the said incident occurred was held in police custody for what the government term as violation of its rules and attacking its monitoring team. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
While the State’s Commissioner of Information, Mr. Charles Udo and the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Engr. Emmanuel Ekuwem have all issued statements condemning the Church for flouting the CAN and Covid19 committee compliance rules, with the SSG threatening that they (the church) would face the law. Government has also announced the shutting down of the Church till further notice, and instituted a suit against the church.
According to an eye witness, who said she was there when the whole thing started on Sunday, “The SSG is not saying the truth of what happened there that day. It was the police men on the team that started attacking the members of the Church in manner that appeared as if they planned it and resolved not to even entertain any reason at all. If it is about adhering to the rules as they are saying, the church had complied in every area, providing sanitizers, hand washing, including the distance specified”, she pointed out. View pictures in App save up to 80% data.
While onlookers and the public believe that CAN’s action might not be unconnected with the position of Christ Embassy not to be a member of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), and their action a vindictive move to get at the Church, others also are quick to blame the church for flouting CAN-Government’s covid19 monitoring and compliance rules. Whether the allegations and counter allegations are true or not from both side, the days ahead promised to be interesting, as the court alone remain the only arbiter and one to decide who is guilty or not.
Though there are unconfirmed news that government has decided to drop and withdraw her charges against the Church, a decision many felt it is to avoid embarrassment after reviewing the actions of her officials.