FCT Baptist Conference calls on FG, ASUU to resolve differences, reopen universities

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The FCT Baptist Conference has called on the Federal Government and the leadership of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to resolve their differences with a view to reopening the universities as soon as possible.

The Conference which comprises Baptist churches in the Federal Capital Territory and adjourning states where there is geographical congruity made this call at the weekend at its just-concluded 5th Annual Session held at the First Baptist Church, Garki and the National Christian Centre, Abuja.

According to a press statement issued on Monday, 16 November, 2020 and signed by the Public Relations Officer of the Conference, Rev Adebayo Oladeji, the Communique signed by its President, Rev Dr Israel Akanji and the Chairman, Rev Dr Idowu Akintola said the ongoing closure of the universities was unacceptable and unjustifiable.

“We note with dismay and concern the frequent and over-prolonged ASUU strikes which have caused untold hardship to the students, their parents and the lecturers in the Nigerian public universities.

“The FCT Baptist Conference hereby call on the Federal government and the leadership of ASUU to resolve the issue amicably in the interest of our children whose future is being wasted as a result of the strike.

“The ongoing closure of our universities are unacceptable and unjustifiable,” the FCT Baptist Conference stated.

The Conference also tasked the government to address all the demands made by the youths in the recent #EndSARS nation-wide protests with a view to preventing a recurrence and the attendant problems in the nearest future.

Their words; “We noted the pertinent issues raised by the Nigerian youths during the #EndSARS protests against police brutality, deteriorating security and socio- economic conditions of the country.

“While we commend the government on the preliminary steps taken thus far to address some of the issues, it is our hope that the outstanding issues would be promptly pursued to a logical conclusion.

“This will prevent a future reoccurrence and the consequences.”

They stated “We commend the Nigerian Baptist Convention (NBC) for encouraging its various churches, organisations, and members to donate palliatives to cushion the effect of the lockdown during the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“That the experience of COVID-19 has presented the Church an opportunity to go digital. It is therefore resolved that churches should further develop necessary capability in response to possible future reoccurrence.

“We call on the Nigerian Baptist Convention to show interest in the ongoing national discourse on the controversial Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) (2020 as amended) and also to make known its position to the government on the law.

“As a Conference, we call on the Federal government to suspend the aspect that puts the Church under its control. It is totally unacceptable.”

It was also resolved that all members should pray fervently for the successful election of a new President for the Nigerian Baptist Convention as the incumbent, Rev Dr Samson Ayokunle is rotating out after a glorious 10 years of two terms tenure of office.

The Conference itself is expected to have its full-time President once the Convention ratifies the report of the Search Committee that is working on it.

Officers of the Conference include, among others, the Vice Chairman, Rev David Dogara, Recording Secretary, Rev Dr Dapo Olayiwola, Chairman, Ministerial Board Sub-committee, Rev Adams Mutuwa, Chairman, the Pastors’ Fellowship, Rev Dr Victor Abayomi, the Chairman, Men Missionary Union, Pastor Kehinde Ogunsanya, the President, Women Missionary Union, Mrs Saadatu Yashim and the Director, Baptist Women Union, Pastor Mrs Victoria Akanji.

Chairman, Deacon Fellowship-Deacon Bola Rotimi, the Treasurer, Dn Chori Bakoshi, the Auditor, Dn. Sergius Kadiri, Auditor, Christian Education Director is Rev Dr Stephen Yashim, the Chairperson of the Welfare is Dns Bisi Olawale, the Chairman of Stewardship Committee is Rev David Galadima, the Chairman of the Mission Committee is Rev Dongson Sanda, the Youth President is Dn Dogara Bulus and Rev Adebayo Oladeji, the Public Relations Officer are also part of the team.

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