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CAN rejects CAMA, asks FG to repeal law

Amid the lingering controversy trailing the newly assented to the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 (CAMA by President Muhammadu Buhari, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has outrightly rejected the law .

The new law, by implications, has repealed the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990 (1).

In a statement by Pastor Adebayo Oladeji, Special Assistant, (Media &Communications) to the CAN’s President , His Eminence, Rev Dr Samson Ayokunle, the Christian body said the new law ‘’is unacceptable, ungodly, reprehensible and an ill-wind that blows no one any good. It is a time bomb waiting to explode.”

The statement added:”we recall 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. 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 and rank the church as a secular institution under secular control. 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.”

They added that the offensive section of the controversial and ungodly law was 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.

The statement further stressed,”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. They therefore called on President Buhari to urgently return the law to the National Assembly for immediate amendment, adding, “Nigeria should not be compared with any other nation when it comes to the relationship between the religious institutions and the government. In Nigeria, people’s religions are tied to their humanity and of course, their life.”

The CAN wondered how the government would 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? For example, how can a non-Christian head of Government Ministry be the one to determine the running of the church? It is an invitation to trouble that the government does not have power to manage. Let the government face the business of providing infrastructure for the people. Let them focus on better health provision, food, education, adequate security employment, etc. The government should not be a busy body in a matter that does not belong to it. The government does not have the technical expertise to run the church of God because of its spiritual nature,’’ the statement added

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