….Pledges to rehabilitate Olakunle Akinola road
By Ebunoluwa Sessou
Deputy Senate President, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, has said that the country needs Christian leaders who are spiritually equipped to be used as catalysts of transformation in the country as well as fresh educational tools equipped for church leadership in Africa and Nigeria in particular. This is a challenge and an admonition to all Christians.
He disclosed this during the 30th/31st convocation ceremony and the 32nd-anniversary ceremony of the West Africa Theological Seminary, WATS, held in Lagos.
Represented by Barr. Felix Eshalomi, Omo-Agege who spoke on the theme, “Global vision, Global mission: Agenda for Excellence in Global Leadership Through Theological Education”, explained that the change in global Christianity has brought about the need to assess the effectiveness of theological education in today’s world.
According to him, theological education has become a global enterprise that is gaining ground both in importance and in complexity as Christianity expands not only in Nigeria and Africa but the world in general.
“This rapid expansion calls for a parallel advancement in equipping leaders who can guide with wisdom in the coming decades.
“Mission leaders are called to be world-class global leaders equipped to serve in diverse, non-active communities within and beyond the traditional boundaries.
“The State and the church must of necessity become partners in the current drive to rid the society of every worrisome tendency.
“The seminary remains the bedrock of Christian education, with its curriculum and learning experiences geared towards a holistic formation and the cultivation of excellence in character and in learning.
“During the past five decades, the heartland of global Christianity has shifted to the Southern hemisphere.
”This places the responsibility of future Christianity predominantly in the hands of church leaders in these regions. It is crucial to reflect on how effective theological education is to producing completed church leaders, especially in Africa”, he said.
Omo-Agege, however, in his address observed that lack of a good road network might impede smooth operations of the seminary in the coming years.
He then promised to rehabilitate the Olakunle Akinola street at Akinyele bus stop, Ipaja, in Ipaja/Ayobo area of Lagos, the road that leads to the seminary school.
He assured the management of WATS of the readiness of the federal government to fix the road within twelve months.
“My pledge is that the rehabilitation of the road will be done in collaboration with the Lagos State government.
“Let me use this medium to assure WATS that we will join forces together to rehabilitate the road for the sake of WATS but if the state government did not support us, the federal government will do it before the end of another calendar year.
“Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu and I went to the same, the University of Benin, we know how to build on this relationship”, he said.
Meanwhile, the Provost of WATS, Pastor Olufemi Martins, who earlier urged the Federal and Lagos State governments to rehabilitate the Olakunle Akinola road at Akinyele bus stop, Ipaja in Ipaja/Ayobo area of Lagos.
He made the call during the 30th and 31st convocation ceremony of 2020/2021 graduating students of the school on Saturday, last week.
Martins noted that WATS as one of the largest non-denominational theological seminaries in Nigeria has trained men and women for holy living for the purpose of reaching the unreached through the gospel of Christ with the efforts to bring about national and continental spiritual awakening.
“WATS trains ministers from over the 100 denominations and one time had minsters in training from over 14 African nations”, he hinted.
Despite the successes, the Provost lamented that the major challenge of WATS is accessible to the seminary through the Olakunle Akinola road/Emma Lou Maxey Avenue which become impassable with the arrival of the rains.
According to him, “We struggle to raise funds towards some remedial rehabilitation but when that became difficult, we gave up.
“In 2017, WATS has single-handedly with approval of the Ipaja/Ayobo LCDA embarked on rehabilitation of the road but our efforts are not enough. We need the intervention of the State government as the road has become almost unmotorable.
Vanguard News Nigeria