Monday, 12 August 2013

Nigeria: The Sweet Smell of Money is also the Bitter Taste of Stolen

Preaching the gospel of controversy
Once again a religious establishment with a sprawling business empire and an overly charismatic leader whose hubris will rival the extreme arrogance exhibited by Lucifer in the times of old is embroiled in controversy.
In fact, it appears to find myriad ways to court notoriety and be a ready receptacle for opprobrium and worse within its temple halls where violence and indifference have found expression and in the tertiary institution on its grounds that runs like a glorified secondary school.
In the case of indifference, about two years on, the child that was kidnapped from the crèche has now been reunited with its parents and that is wonderful news, a great cause for celebration more for the parents than for how it appeared the victims were treated without care or due consideration when the event occurred.
The tithe of writhe
However, now, it is another looming crisis that will determine what the character of that establishment represents.
An army tribunal recently found that one of their own had embezzled funds and as a ‘good’ Christian in church but a corrupt official beyond the temple walls had contributed the tithe into the coffers of the church in the sum of NGN 11 million ($68,497).
Now, because the majority of the moneyed in Nigeria who generally have no entrepreneurial sources of income nor are they speculators in the stock market to the extent of carting off with the bank, one can only suppose their unaudited sources of wealth have been corruptly acquired through degrees of fraudulent activity from simple influence peddling through to blatant thievery by embezzlement.
Due anywhere but right
The churches usually ask no questions because their moral compass has long lost its magnetism that once pointed due north to honest, prudent, righteous and reputable conduct to the libation of the Mammon ensconced on a throne where the sacred and most holy altar used to be.
Obviously, the church might well say they received donations and offerings in good faith, but that is the standard to which we view the secular world at which point the law might suggest the receiving party is a handler of stolen goods.
Again, it might well be a case of a mistaken and misdirected investigation, but the sleuthhounds have followed the scent of the money to pockets that might well include the collection buckets of that church. Lord have mercy.
What will they do?
If the church as it hopes to stand in the strictest moral rectitude is to maintain its integrity, it should require no persuasion to move everything possible temporal and spiritual to extricate themselves from this rotten embarrassment too foul for words to express in its odium and repugnance by returning the moneys paid with interest to the army with a loud display of the moralist dogma they preach at others but sometimes fail to observe for themselves.
One expects that this will be the case, but with an establishment literally inured to criticism, we might just have another thing to whip them with, God knows these people are gluttons for punishment, turning the other cheek with the rapidity of a lathe when convenient and acting like fiery rabid Rottweilers at other times, we’ll be red meat before we could scamper to safety. Run!


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