Christians in Nigeria, under the umbrella of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) have described the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020, which was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari recently, as a time bomb waiting to explode.
CAN, which asked President Buhari to urgently return the law to the National Assembly for immediate amendment, said that the law which by implication has repealed the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990 (1) was assented to despite its rejection at the Public Hearing stage.
In a statement today, August 20 by the Special Assistant, (Media & Communications) to the CAN President, Pastor Adebayo Oladeji, the Christian body said that if the federal government insists on retaining the legislation, it would be seen as a declaration of war on Christianity and the agenda to destroy the Church.
“The law, to say the least is unacceptable, ungodly, reprehensible and an ill-wind that blows no one any good. It is a time bomb waiting to explode.”
CAN said that during the first term of the President, there was a Public Hearing conducted by the National Assembly on the “Non- Governmental Organisations Bill tagged ‘Bill for an Act To Provide For The Establishment Of The Non-Governmental Organizations Regulatory Commission For The Supervision, Co-ordination And Monitoring Of Non Governmental Organizations’ which was attended by CAN and many NGOs.
It said that at the Public Hearing, the Bill that sought to bring the religious organizations and NGOs under the control and influence of the government was totally rejected because it would snuff life out of the church.
“We thought it was all over until we heard of the CAMA that was assented to by the President, making the rejected bill a law.
“The satanic section of the controversial and ungodly law is Section 839 (1) &(2) which empowers the Commission to suspend trustees of an association (in this case, the church) and appoint the interim managers to manage the affairs of the association for some given reasons.
“While we are not against the government fighting corruption wherever it may be found, yet we completely reject the idea of bringing the Church, which is technically grouped among the NGOs, under control of the government. The Church cannot be controlled by the government because of its spiritual responsibilities and obligations.
“This is why we are calling on the Federal government to stop the implementation of the obnoxious and ungodly law until the religious institutions are exempted from it.”
CAN said that Nigeria should not be compared with any other nation when it comes to the relationship between the religious institutions and the government, saying that in Nigeria, people’s religions are tied to their humanity and their life.
“How can the government sack the trustee of a church which it contributed no dime to establish?
“How can a secular and political minister be the final authority on the affairs and management of another institution which is not political?”