The senior pastor of the Daystar Christian Centre, Sam Adeyemi, is however not new to this arrangement.
A number of popular churches in Lagos State have adjusted their service time for crossover services this year.
This follows a directive from the Lagos State government that curfew times will be imposed from 12am to 4am.
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), has since instructed worship centres to adhere to government’s directives.
In the years past, most churches began their Crossover services by 9pm or 10pm and it ended way back midnight on January 1 of the New Year.
However, this year, they have been forced to push back by several hours.
The House on the Rock Church in highbrow Lekki area for instance, will begin their service by 6.30pm with an end-of-the-year praise and worship session. The main service starts 7pm and ends 9pm.
It will not be streamed online until 10pm.
Also, The Covenant Nation has announced through its senior pastor, Poju Oyemade, that the on-site service will be held from 7pm to 9pm.
Oyemade said it would be “a time of teaching praises and declarations”.
He has always ended his services before 11pm, encouraging families to cross into the New Year together, in their homes.
This week, Adeyemi tweeted: “If you say “Happy New Year” at 2pm on 31st December in Lagos, you won’t be wrong. You’ll only be joining people in Sydney Australia to say it at that time. In fact, you’ll be 10 hours ahead of others in Nigeria.
“Don’t stress over time to crossover. Just crossover. #HappyNewYear.”
The group said it came to this conclusion after a thorough review of the circumstances that led to the inclusion of Nigeria.
The Igbos in Nigeria Movement (INM) has blamed “political” Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and groups that have showed incurable bias and sympathy for terrorist organisations for the inclusion of Nigeria in the United States’ blacklist for religious intolerance.
In a statement signed by its President, Mazi Ifeanyi Igwe, the Igbo group said the U.S. was misled by the political wing of CAN and groups affiliated to terrorism.
The INM noted that the U.S’ report was extracted from NGOs and international news reports that are totally out of tune with the reality in Nigeria.
According to the group, the United States’ blacklist could ultimately incite Christians against their Muslim neighbours in parts of the country that have till date remained peaceful and free of ethno-sectarian crisis
The INM, however, that the United States discards its report listing Nigeria as a country that promotes religious persecution as it is lacking in facts while it is a product of misleading reports by the political wings of supposed religious groups.
The cleric also cautioned the youths to listen to the advice of their elders and religious leaders, noting that advice from such personalities would never be destructive.
Anambra State chapter of Christians Association of Nigeria (CAN) has advised the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike to handle the alleged killings in Oyigbo with extreme care to forestall escalation.
The chairman, Rev. Dr. Ndubuisi John who gave the advice on Thursday in Onitsha in a press briefing, urged the governor to avoid generalizing his anger towards Igbo race, but rather govern with the wisdom of God as the Shepherd of the State.
He described the killings as dehumanizing and called on Church leaders to assist in dousing the situation.
He said, “Youths should lay down their arms and come down to round table conference so that we can discuss and know how to manage the issue.
“I was told that IPOB activities in Oyigbo and entire Rivers State caused the ugly development which infuriated the governor and prompted him to clamp dowm on IPOB members.
“I wouldn’t say that it is not true that there is a group called IPOB but everybody in Igbo land is not a member of IPOB. So, shooting of every Igbo man seen is very wrong.
“The Governor can’t generalize his anger towards Igbo race, it is absolutely wrong. He should behave maturely, because as a Governor and a person, we respect and adore his office and we expect him to also act as a Governor with mercy”.
He described the #EndSARS protest as backup grievances against government and explosion occasioned by sufferings, Ndubisi commiserated with victims of the protest that included, the dead, the living and the injured.
“No doubt the protest was fallout of prolonged anger; people have been dying in silence until now. But the killings is not palatable especially as people are gradually recovering from protest,” the cleric added.
The Christian Association of Nigeria on Tuesday asked President Muhammadu Buhari to suspend the implementation of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA).
The suspension request was contained in an email statement forwardedby the office of CAN’s President, Rev. Olasupo Ayokunle. Noble Reporters Media extracts
The CAMA has generated controversy since it was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari on August 7.
The Act has serious consequences for the functioning of nonprofits, including churches, in the country, critics have said.
CAN, in its letter to Buhari on Tuesday, said it is yet to view a full copy of the Act.
“We consider the Act, as indeed, a complex of statecraft compendium, laden with issues that are grossly inimical to national interest, security (- peace and stability), and overall wellbeing of the Nigerian-state,” the statement said.
CAN vilified the Act for not receiving input from “various interest groups” or for failing “to accommodate their views.”
It also suggested there was no point in seeking “judicial intervention or amendment of the Act by the National Assembly” as such “shall achieve nothing much.”
“Mr. President . . . we are of the opinion that you should kindly issue the appropriate directives to suspend the implementation of CAMA 2020 and affirm a thorough reappraisal of the legislation that is in correlation with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended), other extant legal and policy frameworks, the national economy, national security, national interest and the wellbeing of the Nigerian-state,” the CAN statement ended.
READ CAN’S FULL STATEMENT:
President Muhammadu Buhari GCFR State House Abuja
We respectfully acknowledge the invitation extended to us to make an input into the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA), 2020 following the myriad of objections that attended the enactment of the Act.
While we sincerely appreciate the courtesy of your invitation, we are however constrained from doing so on the following grounds:
We are yet to be availed with the authentic version of the voluminous Act, made up of 870 sections besides the sundry and complex schedules and addendum. We consider the Act, as indeed, a complex of statecraft compendium, laden with issues that are grossly inimical to national interest, security (- peace and stability), and overall wellbeing of the Nigerian-state.
From the reactions of stakeholders and a cross-section of the Nigerian-state, it is apparent that the Act either did not receive input from the respective various interest groups or failed to accommodate their views, sundry concerns and varying interests of the Nigerian people. Without prejudice to our observations, such a law ought to welcome and accommodate the sundry and varying interests of the Nigerian people.
Furthermore, we are mindful that comments in public domain are beginning to indicate that CAMA, 2020 has the potential that can further undermine the faith of stakeholders in the Nigerian-state. The reactions from public officeholders have not helped matters because they are binary in perspective and pander towards a fait accompli.
The dominant schools of thought in the public domain, hold the view that should stakeholders of the Nigerian-state seek judicial intervention or amendment of the Act by the National Assembly, they shall achieve nothing much, as they consider such, as exercises in futility. We must allay their fears and encourage them to exercise their democratic rights in our participatory democracy; hoping that when citizens approach these state institutions, they shall rise up to the challenge.
Mr. President, from the foregoing, we are of the opinion that you should kindly issue the appropriate directives to suspend the implementation of CAMA 2020 and affirm a thorough reappraisal of the legislation that is in correlation with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended), other extant legal and policy frameworks, the national economy, national security, national interest and the wellbeing of the Nigerian-state.
In order to participate actively in such an exercise, you may wish to kindly furnish us with an official version as assented by you. This will enable us do the due diligence required, please.
Once more, do accept the assurances of our esteemed consideration as we pray for the continued presence and Will of the Almighty God of all-creation by the Holy Spirit in Nigeria through Jesus Christ Our Lord, Savior, Redeemer and soon coming KING. (Amen)
Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, has said that the major concern of religious leaders with the recently enacted Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) 2020 is the fear that the processes are not abused in a way that compromises the entire structure and operation of the organisation
Professor Osinbajo who spoke during the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Annual General Conference on Thursday stated that these leaders want to be accountable, contrary to views based on reactions to a section of the act.
He maintained that the CAMA 2020 is massive legislation that covers a wide range of issues on companies and if a section is contentious, what the aggrieved parties can do is to approach the National Assembly and propose an amendment.
“As a general position, I do not think it will be right to say that pastors don’t want to be accountable. I believe that several Christian organizations and pastors are willing to be accountable. The problem that they may have is ensuring that processes are not abused in such a way as to compromise the entire organization. And I think that if all that is required is some process of accountability, I think it will be easier for organizations to accept that.
“The concern of the Churches is that it could lead to a situation where practically anybody could be appointed as a trustee to oversee the Church and a Church or a Mosque is a spiritual organization and if you do not share the same faith with the Church or Mosque, you may be the wrong person and if a wrong is appointed, you may create more trouble for the organization.
“What can be done is that, whatever the proposal for amendment may be, whatever the views of the leadership of the church may be, regarding the question of how the trustees, whether they are interim trustees or not, can be put in the form of a proposal that will be taken to the National Assembly for consideration for an amendment to the law, that is the process which is entirely opened and ought to be pursued,” the Vice President added.
CAMA Fears President Muhammadu Buhari signed the CAMA bill into law in August, repealing and replacing the extant 1990 act, with the aim that the new legislation will be the most significant in three decades, promoting the ease of doing business, while reducing regulatory hurdles in the country.
However, a portion of the legislative piece tagged Incorporated Trustees, states that religious bodies and charity organisations will now be strictly regulated by the Registrar-General of the Corporate Affairs Commission and the supervising minister.
Additional clauses in the act show that the commission can suspend the trustees of an association and appoint an interim manager to run the affairs of the organisation
But Vice President Osinbajo clarified that the section will affect these organisations; “Churches, Mosques, and church organizations are regarded as charities. It is the Incorporated Trustees Section of the Companies and Allied Matters Act that has become controversial. And because churches are charities, the provisions in the incorporated trustees’ section obviously affect the churches.
“What the Churches are concerned about is a provision that says that in the event that some wrong-doing is found to be perpetrated by the trustees of the particular organization or Church, the Registrar-General of the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) can go to court and get an order to appoint interim administrators or interim trustees for the Church or whichever charity organization and manage the organization.”
C.A.N Talks Tough Meanwhile, the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) kicked against the act and called on President Buhari to suspend the law in the interest of the country.
“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.
“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? 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 the trouble that the government does not have the power to manage. Let the government face the business of providing infrastructure for the people.”
The Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) in Adamawa State, Bishop Dami Mamza, has tested positive for COVID-19.
Mamza, who is also the Catholic Bishop of Yola Diocese and a member of the state’s COVID-19 Containment Committee, confirmed this in a statement on Sunday.
He disclosed that his COVID-19 status was confirmed by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), adding that he has decided to go into self-isolation.
According to the clergyman, one lesson for the people is that they should appreciate and understand the importance of making themselves available for testing if need be.
While noting that testing positive for the virus was not a death sentence, the bishop urged the people to pray for him and all who tested positive for the disease.
He also urged them to take the preventive measures seriously in order to curb the spread of coronavirus in the state.
Meanwhile, the state governor, Umaru Fintiri, has vowed that his administration would not leave any stone unturned until lasting peace was achieved in Adamawa.
The governor, who met with CAN leaders in Yola, the state capital said his administration was on a mission to close the gaps to ensure residents live well and would not discriminate on any basis.
He stressed that to promote development and liberty for all, there must be peace and stability that could only be achieved with good governance, tolerance, harmonious co-existence, and genuine reconciliation.
Governor Fintiri was worried about the security challenges bedevilling Adamawa over the years, such as Boko Haram insurgency, communal clashes, clashes between farmers and herders, banditry, and kidnapping.
He decried that such challenges have left the people devastated, impoverished, and living in fear.
The governor, however, stressed that Adamawa has maintained its posture as a peaceful state, despite conflicts and crisis that threatened its peace in the past.
He explained that the peace being enjoyed in the state was as a result of his government’s good thinking and mediation efforts, in collaboration with groups and stakeholders such as CAN working assiduously to unite the people.
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has rejected “outrightly” the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020, which was signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari on August 7.
“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,” said a statement by Pastor Adebayo Oladeji, the Special Assistant on Media and Communications) to CAN President, Rev Dr Samson Ayokunle.
CAN’s position is in strong contrast to that of the Presidency which hailed the new law as innovative and “geared toward enhancing the ease of doing business in the country”.
In its statement on Thursday, CAN made clear that its grouse was not with efforts by the government to fight corruption but a section of the Act that contained what it said amounted to an attempt to bring churches under government control.
“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,” it said.
“While we are not against the government fighting corruption wherever it may be found, 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.”
Based on its position, the association expects the federal government to change course and amend the law.
It said, “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.
“We call on President Muhammadu Buhari to urgently return the law to the National Assembly for immediate amendment. Nigeria should not be compared with any other nation when it comes to the relationship between religious institutions and the government. In Nigeria, people’s religions are tied to their humanity and of course, their life.”
Should the government insist on implementing the law, CAN believes it would amount to an affront to Christianity.
“If the government is bent on imposing a law on us which the entire Church in Nigeria is against, then, they have declared war on Christianity and the agenda to destroy the Church which we have spoken against before now is coming to the open more clearly,” it said.
“If you cannot give us good amenities of life, we would not allow you to take away our liberty to worship our Maker.”
CAN is surprised that President Buhari signed the CAMA Bill into law with such a section in it because it had initially rejected moves to bring the church under government regulation during the President’s first term.
It said, “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 Organisations Regulatory Commission For The Supervision, Co-ordination And Monitoring Of Non-Governmental Organisations’ which was attended by CAN and many NGOs.
“At the Public Hearing, the Bill that sought to bring the religious organisations 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.”
Defending its position against the law, CAN questioned what right the government had to control an institution it did not establish.
It is also concerned about the implication of allow secular officials to superintend over spiritual matters, arguing that, ultimately, the government had specific responsibilities to focus on.
“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? it asked.
“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 Rivers State chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has spoken against the BBNaija reality TV show which began a new edition on Sunday.
Chairman of CAN in Rivers State, Stanley Dimkpa, stated that the show is evil as he urged everyone to call for its end.
According to him, it promotes immorality and rewards wrongs.
He said, “All these are needed to replace what we have in our world today where societal ills, crimes and immoral behaviours are geometrically increasing due to bad governance, poverty and reward for wrong doing, such as Big Brother Naija.
“I want to emphasize Big Brother Naija because all of us have to fight collectively to stop this immoral act and injustice in our land, as Christians and Africans, we have respect for mankind.
“For those of us that have allowed our friends and families to encourage the patronage of Big Brother Naija, know that it is an evil and we must clampdown on it,” he said.
The Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Kaduna State chapter has asked worshippers to be extremely careful as they attend churches in order to minimize the risk of contracting the deadly coronavirus.
CAN urged Christian faithful to use the reopening of places of worship in the state to exhibit good conduct and to strictly observe all the protocols including the washing of hands, social distancing, wearing of face masks and other rules associated with the curbing of the spread of COVID-19.
The state chairman of CAN, Rev. John Joseph Hayab, in a statement made available to DAILY POST in Kaduna, on Wednesday, said, CAN Kaduna state wishes to appreciate the state Governor and the State Standing Committee on COVID-19 for allowing places of worship to reopen from Sunday this week (14th June) after a long and eventful lockdown enforced to help curb the spread of COVID-19.
The statement explained, “We know that people have stayed under restrictions for about 75 days. During the period, many experienced hardships, but it should not be a regrettable experience because it actually helped to reduce the number of persons infected, and we recorded a lower death rate in our dear state.”
The statement said that as the state government allows citizens to resume partial normal life activities, especially resuming church gatherings, CAN, Kaduna state appeals to all faithful and the general public to show good and godly examples.
“The Bible says we should let our light shine that all may see our good works and give glory to God. Accordingly, our people should not be carried away by the joy of lifting the restriction of movement and totally forget health matters, for it is only when there is a life that we can worship and do our businesses,” CAN advised. CAN, therefore, called on all pastors and church elders to give godly and wise leadership at this delicate time, stressing that churches must continue to observe all protocols and guidelines that have been laid down by the government and NCDC.
“All worshipers should come with their face masks during services. Churches should help to provide face masks to those who do not have and cannot afford.
“Adequate provision of hand sanitizers or handwashing materials should be made available in our homes and churches during our worship services.
“We should maintain good hygiene at all times and observe physical distancing in our sitting arrangements. Worshipers are to sit two meters away from one another.
“Let’s make good use of our members who are medical workers for proper use of Infrared thermometer to measure the temperature of every worshiper,” CAN further advised.
The Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has expressed concern on the Infectious Disease Control bill before the House of Representatives.
It maintained that it should not be passed into law in national interest.
CAN’s opinion was contained in a letter dated 4th May, 2020 by its General Secretary, Joseph Daramola, to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila.
CAN urged the House of Representatives to discontinue discussion on the Bill forthwith in the overall interest of the Nigerian citizens.
“However, should you insist that there is merit in this unacceptable bill, we insist that this bill should pass through public hearing,” it said.
CAN told the legislators that courts on numerous occasions struck out Acts of Parliaments and legislations, including Executive Orders of Governments, which violates any of the Fundamental Human Rights provided for in the Constitution.
The organisation also queried the intention behind the bill, and advised the leadership and members of the House of Representatives to immediately allow the spirit of God to prevail over the primordial intentions and ambition.
It asked the lawmakers not to pass what it called the “controversial, nebulous and obnoxious bill into law in the overall interest of Nigerians.”
“This bill is not what is currently being expected from the House of Representatives, but rather, the development of the vaccines that will stop this COVID-19 pandemic from further killing of our citizens,” CAN advised.
Jamatul Nasiril Islam (JNI) and the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) have jointly called for prayers against the further spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).
The two faith-based organisations have also advised Nigerians to compliance with government’s directives on what they should do to prevent the coronavirus from spreading further.
The groups made the call on Thursday during an awareness campaign visit to traditional rulers in Cham and Dadiya Chiefdoms in Balanga Local Government Area of the state the by the Task Force committee on the Coronavirus.
Alhaji Sale Danburam, Secretary JNI and member of the committee said that prayers and compliance with government directives would go a long way toward stopping the spread of the virus.
According to him, people need to understand that the virus is really spreading and killing people, hence the need for the public to pray for God to intervene.
“As Muslims whatever happens we submit it to Almighty God and we have our weapon which is prayers.
“We urge you to pray for us not to have the virus in the state and for those infected to recover.
“Government has done its own part and our own is to comply for all of us to succeed,” he said.
Danburam commended the state government for its commitment to the fight against the spread of the virus.
Mr Samuel Bulus, Vice Chairman of CAN and member of the committee also urged people to support government to save lives, ensure peace and development of the state.
Bulus said because of the virus, church services had been suspended except on Sunday on which day “worshipers must not be more than 50 persons at a time”.
He advised those with small Churches not to congregate more than 20 people and to provide water, soap, and sanitisers for good hygiene against the spread of the virus.
He emphasised the need to observe social distancing during funerals, marriages, and other gatherings that are necessary.
The Christian leader lauded the efforts of the state government in the fight against the spread of the virus.
On their part, the traditional rulers commended the state governor Inuwa Yahaya for the measures put in place by his administration to contain the spread of the virus.
They pledged to communicate to their subjects, government’s directives on what they should do to stop the spread of the virus.
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has directed churches in the country to observe Sunday, March 22nd and 29th as national days of prayers against the Coronavirus pandemic in Nigeria and globally.
CAN President, Reverend Samson Ayokunle also advised churches to strictly follow the guidelines for combating COVID-19 in all their gatherings as they trust God for victory over the plague.
The christian body says it is not unaware of the ban on the presence of more than 50 people in a gathering so it is advising churches to conduct house cell based services, online services and in the absence on online facilities, they can break services into not more than 50 members per shift.
The Christian Association of Nigeria also asked churches to provide alcohol-based hand sanitizers, soap and water and maintain at least one meter distance with anyone coughing or sneezing.