Obasanjo says corruption in Nigeria a spiritual problem; asks churches to help

Nigeria’s former president, Olusegun Obasanjo, has asked churches in Nigeria to join the campaing against corruption.

While speaking on ‘The Role of the Church in the Fight Against Corruption in Nigeria’, Obasanjo said that the church could use its power of influence in helping to combat the plague of corruption eating Nigeria away.

Obasanjo, who was at the 2017 Convention Lecture of the Victory Life Bible Church International in Abeokuta, on Saturday, said that the anti-corruption war in Nigeria is “a fight for the soul of the nation.”

He said that legislation and enforcement of laws has not been impactful in achieving desired results in fighting corruption and as such alternative methods are necessary.

“Legislations alone are not enough as they are often breached by those who make them and those who should implement them.

“Our main problems are moral, ethical, attitudinal failure and disorientation. The church is an institution that provides the moral and ethical standards for us as believers. Man alone by himself cannot get rid of corruption from the world, he needs the assistance of God.

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“The behaviour of some of  our men of God leaves much to be desired. They not only celebrate but venerate those whose sources of wealth are questionable. They accept gifts (offerings) from just anybody without asking questions giving the impression that anything is  acceptable in the house of God,” Obasanjo said.

“Here must come the society and the church with the spirit of God to work together to undo the harm that man has done and continue to do to the perfect work of God on earth,’’ he said.

Obasanjo, however, said that the church also needs to stamp out corruption in its own domain before it can impact on the larger society.

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“The church needs to clear its Augean stable. The temple of God must be cleanest to restore the holiness of the church. Our present day money changers and merchants must be chased out of the church.

“The pulpit must be used to teach and preach righteous and honest living. To preach that one can acquire wealth without labour is not only deceitful, but also a call to corruption.

“We must be careful in believing and celebrating every testimony of miraculous blessing otherwise we end up celebrating corruption. The behaviour of some of  our men of God leaves much to be desired. They not only celebrate but venerate those whose sources of wealth are questionable. They accept gifts (offerings) from just anybody without asking questions giving the impression that anything is  acceptable in the house of God,” he said.