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March 6, 2022

Leaders should rule with fear of God
— Rev Owoyemi, UACC President

Leaders should rule with fear of God<br>— Rev Owoyemi, UACC President

By Ephraim Oseji

Rev James Bayo Owoyemi  is the President and General Overseer of United Apostolic Church Christ (UACC).

In an interview with Sunday Vanguard in his office in Ibadan, Oyo State, he talked about the growth and progress of the church in the past years, security situation in the country and the forthcoming World Interactive session.

Except:

Last year you and your team visited all UACC Assemblies in Nigeria and Benin Republic, what are your observations and experiences during the visits?

My visitation experience to all UACC Parishes was awesome. The warm receptions accorded me clearly revealed people’s readiness to work with my administration to move the church forward. I observed that ministers of God and congregants are working hard to sustain the gospel in the various assemblies visited. In all we glorify God who granted us success in the course of our tours.

UACC is organizing World Interactive Session during the Pastors’ Conference in Ibadan. What should we expect?

The main focus of the interactive session is evangelism. It is also an avenue to familiarize ourselves with our people at home and in the diaspora.

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The session will further enable people to ask questions on issues they want clarifications. It is also an avenue for people to offer advice that will move the church forward.

So far, you have organized two press conferences in Lagos and Akure, what is the impact of these conferences on the Church?

It has always been our desire to speak the mind of God to the populace and the government. The Press Conferences have aided this objective immensely. We commend the media team which is the brain behind the project. We hope to keep doing this to further evangelism.

The youths are now getting into ritual killings and kidnapping. What do you think went wrong and how can the situation be salvaged?

The society that celebrates immorality rather than opposing such will invariably promote bad attitudes. Ugly behavior doesn’t prevail where there’s justice and good governance.

What part should the government and parents play to ensure youths do not involve themselves in crimes?

Homes and religious institutions have great roles to play to curtail these ugly menaces. We urge homes and religious institutions to inculcate fear of God into our youths. This will go a long way in checking the moral decadence amoung our youths.

UACC now has Student Fellowship in some universities in the South-West, what plans do you have to make sure you have it in all the universities in Nigeria?

Since Student Fellowships provide an avenue to reach out to the youths, emergence of students’ fellowships is part of our agenda. We are ready to fund the project and ensure we have UACC Students fellowships in all tertiary institutions in Nigeria. We have children in most higher institutions in the country and we will encourage them to start fellowships in their various institutions. We will appoint a directorate for the Student Fellowships who will be operating under the Blessed Youth organization-the Youth Wing of our Church.

The Church Pastors’ Conference will be held in Ibadan from March 14 to March 20, what are some of the expectations from the Conference?

Pastors Conference is an avenue to refresh and reignite fire in the ministerial lives of ministers of God. We plan to expand the scope of the pastors’ conference by inviting guest ministers. Among notable men of God who have been invited is Archbishop (Professor) John Faola, an erudite bible scholar. There will be an open air crusade during the conference scheduled to hold at the amphitheater of the famous Lekan Salami Stadium, Ibadan.

What advice do you have for the Government and leaders on how to improve the economy and security of this country?

Our leaders should rule with the fear of God. God has blessed Nigeria with abundant human and natural resources. If the Government can deal decisively with corruption and embrace justice, no doubt, there will be remarkable improvement in the nation’s economy and security.

What is your message to the politicians as the 2023 general election approaches?

People aspiring for political offices in the coming election should approach this with open minds. Politics shouldn’t be “a do or die” affair. If truly we love our country, we should accept election results in good faith.

What advice do you have for the Independent National Electoral Commission?

Credible conduct of elections, where people’s votes count will motivate the electorates. We enjoin INEC to ensure elections are free and safe. More so, there should be stiff penalties for vote buying and selling. INEC should adhere to the amendment in the electoral laws.