By Sam Eyoboka & Olayinka Latona
After about 25 years of construction work, the multimillion Naira National Temple of The Apostolic Church Nigeria, TAC, touted as the largest church in the world, has been inaugurated in Lagos. Sited at the international ground of the Church in Ketu, the newly dedicated temple has a sitting capacity of 100,000 worshippers at a time.
The national president of The Apostolic Church, TAC, and the chairman of LAWNA, Pastor Gabriel Olutola thanked God who enabled them to complete the temple. He described the temple as “The House built with prayer,” stressing that it is a symbol of the church’s unification.
Olutola also used the occasion of the dedication to appreciate the sterling qualities of the pioneer LAWNA chairman, late Pastor Samuel Adegboyega who laid the foundation 25 years ago. He lauded the efforts of the building committee, the national executive council of TAC and all the church members for their financial and spiritual support.
The National President of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Pastor Ayo Oritstejafor who dedicated the temple second door, also appreciated God for the success of the project
In a sermon tagged; “The House of God”, the Cameroon president of TAC, Pastor Paul Tambe stated that if saints humble and pray God will answer their prayers and heal their land.
Earlier in an interview, the LAWNA president traced the genesis of the imposing cathedral to August 4, 1957 when Pastor Isaiah Sakpo received a prophecy about the building of a national temple for the church. The foundation laying ceremony for the project took place during his leadership of LAWNA.
However, after the foundation was laid by his predecessor on May 10, 1986, it had almost become a reproach to the church because of the ugly sight it created in such a prominent area of Lagos. When Pastor Samuel Jemigbon came on board, he decided to take this reproach away.
He created a separate department for the national temple project with qualified accountants and other experienced professionals to supervise the work.
According to Olutola: “We have being on this project and at a point we met a contractor who promised to complete the work for us for N14.3 million. We gave him an advance of N5 million but he did not do one quarter of the job before he started demanding for another N5 million which is a clear indication that N40 million would not finish the job. We spent almost N27 million on the painting alone.
Olutola who could not tell the exact cost of completing the edifice, however, told our reporters that the floor tiles alone gulped about N143 million.
“I will need the assistance of the accountants who would do a lot of mathematics for us to get the whole amount because by the time we wanted to paint, we discovered that there were some errors with the pillars and the walls. And we have to engage another contractor who came to perfect the job and what we thought would cost us between 300,000 and 600,000, cost us N2.3 million.
“There were other minor jobs like that which made us to spend much more than we originally budgeted for. We had to lay cables for our public address systems separately, lighting and video,” he stated.