Supreme Court May Not Make A Difference In Atiku, Obi’s Presidential Election Appeal, Says Anene Nwachukwu

As Nigerians eagerly await the Supreme Court proceedings and judgement on the appeal filed by the presidential candidates of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party (LP) Abubakar Atiku and Peter Obi respectively, on the February 25, Presidential Election, the General Overseer of Rhema Deliverance Mission; Dr. Anene Nwachukwu has declared that the apex court may not come up with a judgement different from the earlier ruling of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal. The General Overseer spoke on the presidential election, his church convention and other issues in an interview with Dave Agwazim. Excerpts:

Q. The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal passed its judgment affirming President Bola Ahmed Tinubu as winner of the election which elicited mixed reactions across the country. As one of the clergies who prophesied prior to the general election, what is your reaction to this judgment?

A. Well, as a Nigerian, we have accepted the verdict of the Court, but that Presidential Election Tribunal is not the final court of the land. The contestants, Peter Obi and Atiku Abubakar have rejected the judgment, and they have promised to head to Supreme Court. I believe that they have taken the right step because until you get to the final court and the final court rules against an issue, then you accept the judgment, but as far as that Appeal Court is not a final Court, they still have the right to appeal. As Nigerians, we received the judgment with mixed reactions knowing well enough that during the election, we participated fully and the process that led to the declaration is clear in totality. As some of the issues raised in that Tribunal were not addressed, Nigerians are not satisfied with certain issues, especially in the area of violence, and method of results declaration. The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) promised Nigerians that they were going to electronically transmit the results into their server, that was the reason why government spent billions of naira to procure BVAS and if the government knew that they were not going to use the BVAS, why did we spend such humongous amount and the Tribunal is telling us that INEC has the right to declare results without BVAS?
We would not have spent such money on that failed project as such amount of money could have lifted our economy. However, as a Christian, the Bible says we should obey those in authority, and since INEC has declared Tinubu the winner, we will all support his Government, unless if God proves otherwise, so we received the judgment with mixed reactions.

Q. Sir, as the Labour Party candidate, Peter Obi and his PDP counterpart Atiku Abubakar have approached the Supreme Court, do you see them spiritually, reclaiming the mandate or upturning the decisions of the Tribunal?

A. Well, since the matter is in Court, I don’t want to take a position since I am not the Chief Justice of the Federation, neither am I one of the Judges, but I believe that there won’t be difference from what we saw at the Appeal Court happening. As a Man of God, our duty is to pray for our Leaders that they do things right. Before the judgment of Appeal Court, I said it that there is nothing changing, I made it openly, I said it categorically. It is not because I am in support of the way the election went, but we have to abide by the laws of the land. The Bible charges us to be obedient to authorities and laws. I am a law-abiding citizen, if you look at my office, youll see Tinubus portrait and that Sanwoolu hanging. We were part of the election here, we saw what happened, but since they have been declared, we have to support them.

Q. Just a few weeks ago Sir, the President marked his first 100 Days in office, how can you appraise his administration so far?

A. Personally, I don’t believe in 100 Days in Office. I hate it with passion, somebody is elected to work for the people, whether you’re 100 Days or one year, you should be able to deliver democratic dividends to Nigerians, there is nothing to celebrate in 100 Days in office. What we are expecting is, let there be reduction in fuel price, let there be reduction in dollar exchange rates, let there be reduction in food prices in the market, let our mothers buy foodstuffs cheaper and cook for their families.
Nigerians are really suffering. As a Pastor, on the first Friday of the month of September I shared 300 bags of rice and 200 cartons of Indomie here in the church. The kind of fights I saw people engage in over 10kg of rice was unprecedented. I went by the side and started weeping, I was not weeping because I am happy, I wept because even people we thought are rich or okay so to say, well dressed were fighting over 10kg of rice. I said to myself, first Friday of October, during our Convention, I will increase it to 500 bags and also implore members to donate to it for us to have even more to give out because the rate of hunger in the land is alarming.

If you go to so many Churches, you’ll see that for people to transport a few children to church is not easy. If you go to church with about seven children, youll spend up to N10,000 on transportation which many families cannot afford attending church services like they used to do in the past due to the untold hardship in the land and rising transportation cost. It is affecting so many things, children are no longer going to churches today, because transport doesn’t come less for them. Many parents leave their children at home on Sundays, and the level of crime rate will increase, at least we teach them morals in the church, which is helping many of them to reduce involvement in crime and other social vices.

The way things are going now, I dont know, there seems to be no solution in sight, dollar is hitting above N1,000, and everything in the market is skyrocketing, whats the hope for the poor man?
The same market where politicians go to is the same market where the poorest of the poor goes too. And, you see, somebody that has up to eight children for example, with all them in schools, their school fees, their feeding money, and taking care of them in a week, you know what it is. Feeding eight people three times a day, you know how much you will spend in a week, so government should alleviate the sufferings of the people, the purpose of government is to affect people positively, shouldering citizens needs, making the citizens comfortable and feeling proud that they’re Nigerians.

Today, everyone is finding a way to travel outside the country for greener pastures, people believe the economy has nosedived, nothing is working out, but we are still praying that God will see us through.

Q. The rising hardship can be related to the removal of Petroleum subsidy and since the government is not going back on it, what do you think, in your analysis that the government should do at this point to ameliorate the astronomic rate of hardship and poverty in the land?

A. There are things Government can do for the citizens, I am not against removal of subsidy, but it would have been done in a very gradual process, not suddenly. Before you remove subsidy, at least you get people palliatives on time, you increase workers salary, you increase food production, you reduce the rate of dollar. These are the necessary things to be put in place. And, when you look at the condition of our country today, you will agree with me that there is no solution in sight.
Look at the level of poverty in the land, people are doing all sorts of things to meet up, and to feed their families. I think that what I would have advised is that Government should have put up some precautionary measures to alleviate the sufferings of the masses. The masses are suffering. One of the ways to alleviate the sufferings of the masses is to ensure steady power supply at a reduced tariff, there’s ongoing debate that electricity tariff has increased, what for? When you removed subsidy, it is like giving somebody food and giving him nail as toothpick, it doesnt work. Giving us steady power supply at low tariff is one way to help the people. People can use the light to barb, to cook. I mean the artisans can function perfectly with steady affordable electicity.

Q. Sir, finally on the state of the nation, recently, Federal Government released N500billion palliatives to each States, do you think that’s a right call? Do you think these palliatives given to the Governors will get to the masses?

A. I am totally against it 100%. We are enriching the Governors, the Governors will give it to their Commissioners, and the Commissioners will give it to their cronies and family members. The people that the palliatives were meant for in particular will not get it. Politicians will share it house by house among their colleagues and political party members. If Government wants to do such a thing, they would have used it the way it will affect the masses. Reduce electricity tariff with that money. There are so many places we will plug the palliative fund, that it will affect people directly. Food production, reduce the price of fertilizers, reduce the price of rice in the market, reduce the price of beans and garri, at least, we will take our palliatives from there.

Q. Sir, Rhema 2023 Convention comes up in a few days, can you talk about it?

A. Our 2023 Convention is coming from October 4th to 8th, and the theme says Behold, I Give Unto You Power. It is time to remind believers that God has endowed us with the power and the gift to manifest. He says these signs shall follow them that believe, and they shall cast out demons”. He has given you power, fortified you. He says they shall tread upon snakes and scorpions, many types of things, and nothing by any means shall hurt them. God has given us power to make wealth, Deuteronomy 8:18 But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he swear unto thy fathers, as it is this day, power to subdue our enemies and power to make impact. So, we want to remind every believer that God created man in His own image, and He gave them dominion, power over every creation. So we need to exercise our authorities, by letting people know they are not created to be under certain influences and powers, but created to be in charge, fruitful, multiply, and replenish the earth. So that is the theme of Our Convention.

Q. What are the expectations of Rhemites?

A. The expectations are that the sick will be healed, the barren will conceive, the jobless will get job, after our prayer, the attackers destinies will stop. We are going to pray for every Family here, that nobody will end 2023 in crisis.

Q. Your last word for Nigerians and followers of Oracle TV?

A. I believe in Nigeria, I believe that we have no other country except this one, and I believe that whosoever that has ears, let him hear, Nigeria will bounce back again; Nigeria will still be respected amongst communities of the World, thats my advice. Let us remain steadfast, play our part in nation building and pray for God to endow our leaders with requisite wisdom to build this nation up.

Written by: Frank Oshanugor

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