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We're not responsible for our 'sacked' priest family woes, Anglican Church


By Okechukwu Onuegbu

The Diocese on the Niger, Anglican Communion, Thursday, said it was not responsible for the family issues confronting it sacked priest, Rev Canon LumenCristi Eboh.

Eboh had at a press conference early in the week, said he was not sacked but rather resigned because some forces in the church caused his wife to leave him, as well as quartered her at an undisclosed location.

Addressing a press conference at Awka, the Anambra State capital, the Deputy Chancellor of the Dioecese on the Niger, Mr Ben Uzuegbu, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), noted there were series of petitions against Eboh which the Dioecese tried severally to settle by constituing a panel but the priest neither honoured their invitation nor replied them.

According to Uzuegbu, these include allegations of domestic violence between the priest and his enstranged wife, a pending court case with reference number FHC/Awk/C/34/2019, buying products from people without paying back, and complaint documented by the Law zoomers, a legal firm, which claimed that the priest impregnated a health challenged lady who was under his custody for prayers.

The SAN also denied the allegations by the priest that the Bishop in charge of the Diocese, Most Rev. Dr Owen Nwokolo demanded for inclusion of his name and that of his wife as trustees of his ministry as well as to hand over landed property of the adoration ministry to him.

Uzuegbu rather explained that the constitution of the Diocese did not allow registration of a rival church or ministry as established by the sacked priest, adding that ownership of the various property acquired  by every parish or through priest of the Dioecese while under their employment and stewardship.

"There is no provision in the Constitution for a priest to register a parallel ministry whilst serving the Dioecese without the official approval from his Bishop. Therefore, this allegations shows the extend the so called Lumenkristi goes to deceive the public. You can judge by yourselves- he was living in the church, being paid by the Church, using the Church properties and resources, misappropriated funds entrusted to him; discreetly registered a ministry yet still claims to be a priest.

"On the claim of taking his wife by the Dioecese, this is quite funny and laughable. It shows the extent of his immoral actions that appears to have caused the wife to abandon him. More so, investigation by the panel shows that he is living with a strange woman who claimed to be his personal Secretary and abandoned the wife. One may ask, how can someone who cannot manage his home , claim that the Church took her away? Wonders shall never end.

How then can someone with many indicting allegations against him claim to have resigned without clearing his name? Also, how can someone on suspension claim to have resigned? Canon XII (1) of the Church states that "if a clergy desires to resign, he shall send his letter of resignation to the Bishop who shall judge whether the resignation should be accepted or not"

"No one is preventing his resignations, he is free to decides what he wants; notwithstanding, he should stop misinforming the public and kindly own up to his atrocities. Let it be known that he is a wolf in sheep clothing seeking for whom to devour. Let the general public beware of such person who has betrayed his vows during ordination. May God help him and show him mercy," he stated. 

Also speaking, the Director of Communications, Diocese on the Niger, Sir. Oselloka Offoh, described as unfounded allegations by their former priest that Bishop Nwokolo was high-handed or not providing well for the priests and dioceseans. 

"Packages the diocese have for the priest and workers are health insurance scheme for workers and their families, theological training and post ordination training scholarships for priests, clergy and wife retreats, seminars and get together, non profit loan facilities through Akuchukwu microfinance bank and others," he noted.

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