ILLEGAL IMPOSITION OF PRIMATE BY YORUBA BISHOPS OF THE AFRICAN CHURCH
I write as a Priest in the African Church to condemn and reject the illegal and unconstitutional imposition of a new Primate by the Yoruba Bishops of the Church against the provisions of the constitution and wish of the members.
To set the records straight, I want to state categorically that at the moment there is no need electing any primate by the Yoruba lay officers for The African Church because the current Primate, His Eminence Dr Emmanuel Udofia has not clock the retirement age neither is he incapacitated to have warrant electing a new primate.
The African church has a constitution which adequate provisions including powers, duties and specification of offices has be made clear and accepted by all and it has been amended for the 5th time on 17th May 2014.
Chapter V, Part 2A, s/n 12.1 of the Constitution, states that the General conference, is “The highest and supreme organ in and for the African church”; and on the 23rd April, 2014 during the African Church 113th Annual General Conference at Abeokuta Diocese, the Meeting approved and accepted the following amendments sent from the steering committee:
1) That the qualifying age for the Primate was retained at 50years, Archbishop 45 years. They are to serve for 10years or retire at the age of 60years (whichever comes first). However, the incumbent Primate Emmanuel Udofia will retire at the age of 65years as provided in the current constitution before this amendment.
Therefore, the call by the Yorubas to inordinately remove the incumbent Primate, His Eminence Dr. Emmanuel Udofia and subsequently conniving to clandestinely elect their factional primate is unconstitutional and totally rejected in its entirety.
Moreover, Chapter 5, Part 2, s/n 12.4,13.3, 14.2, 15.2, 18.2, 20.1, of the African Church constitution, also states that the current Primate who the head of the church is the chairman of all the meetings and shall also be responsible for convening some specific meeting including the one they sat to elect the factional primate today, had issued a circular to all Dioceses and Provinces, suspending all meetings including the General Conference, General Committee, College of Bishops, Primate Advisory Board and Management meetings following the controversies surrounding the compulsory retirement matter, pending when the matter would be interpreted and resolved by relevant body. But instead of the College of Bishops and Executives to adhere to the directives, went ahead to convene a meeting and purportedly elect a primate just to cause tension and ridicule the current Primate, Dr. Udofia.
This further confirms that the purported Yoruba factional primate is nothing but an unconstitutional, illegal and unholy alliance.
Therefore the members of the church and the general public should disregard such unholy, unconstitutional, illegal and sacrilegious show of shame carried out by His Lordships/Grace the Yoruba Bishops and Archbishops and lay officers, His Eminence, Dr. Emmanuel Udofia remains the current and authentic Primate of The African church till 2024 as provided by the 2014 constitution of the African church as amended, he is very sound and has not been found wanting in his duty since assumption of office as Primate of the African Church; as such there is no need of electing another Primate and imposing same on members of the Church.
Rev’d Richard Peter
Priest of the African Church.