*Now known as Reformed Presbyterian Church of Nigeria
By Peter Okutu
Following the suspension of the deputy governor of Ebonyi State, Prof. Chigozie Ogbu, and eight others over their attempt to produce a General Assembly moderator for the Mid-East Synod of the Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, the Synod weekend declared itself autonomous.
The denial of the synod of the rights to produce the moderator had been effected by the Principal Clerk of Presbyterian Church, Rev. Ndukwe Nwachukwu Eme, which many members considered unnecessary and a strong violation of the age-long constitution and procedures that had kept the church together for over a century.
Reading the “ACT OF DECLARATION”, Spokesmen of the Steering Committee, Reformed Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, Rev. Eze Nwonu Eze, stated that the Mid-East Synod of the church decided to become autonomous to free itself from powerful interest groups in the church that had arrogated to themselves the power to set aside the church’s constitution, laws, policies and procedures, which had guided the Presbyterian Church of Nigeria for over 164 years.
Rev. Eze, who pointed out that the Reformed Presbyterian Church would draw membership from 1.5 million members, added that five Synods were in place for take off of the church, even as new synods, presbyteries and parishes would be expected to spring up soon
He said: “Whereas members of the Mid-East synod, being a peace loving people, not given to gangsterism and thuggery and violence in the church of Jesus wish to declare that, in view of the foregoing, we are now autonomous to be known and addressed as the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, with headquarters at Macgregor College, Afikpo, and branches all over the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“Whereas the Mid-East Synod has the ecclesiastical right of self-determination in order to free herself from persisting enslavement, persecution, and bondage, the Mid-East Synod cannot continue to subject herself to antinomian or anti-law Church Administration or set up.
“We also declare Rev. Nzie Nzie Eke as our pioneer General Assembly Moderator. A Board of Trustees has been set up and will be inaugurated in due course.”
Vanguard also learnt that the Mid-East Synod of Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, which comprises Afikpo North, Afikpo South, (Edda), Ivo, Ohaozara and Onicha Local Government Areas of Ebonyi State, had already sworn an affidavit of facts justifying the establishment of Reformed Presbyterian Church of Nigeria.