Osagie, general superintendent of Powerline Bible Church, Ijesha, Lagos, said Nigerians desired a country, and urged the nation’s leaders to do things that would guarantee a better future.
Osagie’s reflections came on the sidelines of his 60th birthday celebrations. He noted that Nigeria was abundantly blessed but regretted that the country was going astray. He called on President Muhammadu Buhari to create an enabling environment for Nigerians to fend for themselves, especially through provision of adequate security.
“We have a vibrant population that can make things happen. But if you ask me, the country is like an old woman whose breast is flat, who can no longer breastfeed her kids. Nigeria is becoming a country where people can no longer feed themselves.
“Recently, a man called me on phone and requested financial assistance. My heart broke when he told me that he could no longer feed himself and his family. He said he wanted me to help him because of the God I serve. That is how low the country has degenerated.”
Osagie was also unhappy about the orgy of killings around the country. He called on Nigerians to imbibe the fear of God as a way of life, maintaining that lack of fear of God was fuelling crises in the country.
He lamented that Nigeria’s leaders were not functional, stating that the test of insincerity of leaders was happening in the country today, even as the malady was affecting everyone.
The bishop expressed unhappiness at President Buhari’s statement to US President Donald Trump that the Fulani herdsmen killing people all over the country were not carrying arms.
“That is a lie. And when a leader chooses to talk like that, there is trouble. If the president wants to be seen to be fighting corruption, he should not be heard making statements like that. So the question is: who is supplying arms to the Fulani herdsmen?
“If government, with all security apparatus, cannot deal with the situation, says it does not know what is happening, who then can? If people say that they do not know those importing the arms, they are lying from both sides of their mouths in a bid to secure their jobs.
“At the moment, we have a government that is insincere. However, everyone must imbibe the fear of God as a way of life so as not to attract God’s punishment,” he warned.
He also berated Senator Dino Melaye for jumping out of a moving vehicle, saying such was not expected of a worthy leader.
Osagie noted that it was possible for man to live up to 120 years on earth, and expressed hopes that he would live to attain that threshold.
“My mother-in-law is 110. My father-in-law died at the ripe age of 108 years. So, I believe that longevity runs in the family and I will get there.
“God has provided for this. David died at a ripe age. Man has a choice of longevity because God says, ‘I put before you life and death; therefore choose life.’ It is what you choose that you are left with.”
He said every man must control what he says with his mouth.
A resident pastor in the church, Reverend Lanre Ogunsakin, said: “Based on the word of God, which is the basis of our faith, it is natural for people to die. But our case is different. Our faith in God is spiritual; we do not doubt God.”
Dr. Emmanuel Inyang, head of the medical mission of the church, explained that moderation was the key to longevity. He explained that the average life expectancy worldwide could be pegged at 70, looking at economic, climatic and other conditions.
Felix Ovbude, chairman of the church committee board, in his message, “Thanksgiving,” to mark Osagie’s birthday, called on all to live a life of gratitude.
“Thanksgiving is what we give to God; it is what He cannot give to Himself,” he said, adding that thanksgiving was a command from God and not a suggestion.