The former Catholic Archbishop of Abuja Diocese and now Emeritus, John Cardinal Onaiyekan has spoken out on the controversial Company and Allied Matters Acts as it affects the church.
The Bishop also spoke about the Southern Kaduna killings and the constitutional review.
He said that it appears the Federal Government may not review the controversial Company and Allied Matters Act which affects religious organisations especially churches. As a stakeholder in Christendom, are you comfortable with it?
Let me start by saying that the Nigerian Inter-Religious Council released a statement a few days ago on this CAMA. I read it carefully and agreed largely with the things they have said there. These include the fact that CAMA is not new.
In other words, there has always been rules and regulations as well as laws on the issues that the CAMA is handling; namely financial transactions, control in terms of finances and even supervision of financial institutions, both private and public.
Every country has those kinds of rules. However, the reason there is some controversy as regards this particular version, that is, CAMA 2020 is because it tried to add a few clauses to handle and deal with non-governmental organisations, charitable organisations and religious institutions; and all these are in one or two articles. It is just that it is Christian organisations that have complained the loudest about it.
This is because we are probably reading what seems to us as the sweeping powers that this CAMA can put in the hands of any enthusiastic government officials in such a way that they will be controlling the internal affairs of churches.