Fashola At Anglican Synod, Advocates Virtues Of Hardwork
May 7, 2012 - Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) on Monday attended the opening of the 3rd Session of the 31st Synod of the Diocese of Lagos Anglican Communion, stating that Nigerians must work as hard as they pray in order to achieve a transformation of the country.
Governor Fashola who spoke before a gathering which included clergymen, members of the laity of the Lagos Diocese at St Saviours' Anglican Church, Marina, Lagos said Nigerians can pray for success but must work hard for prosperity and pray for forgiveness of sins and stop looking for miracles and work to change things that cannot be accepted.
The Governor who buttressed his assertions with facts said part of the issues that have been agitating his mind is the realization that Nigerians have not stopped praying although the approach now is to pray for prosperity as against mercy but the question to be asked is that has the life of an average Nigerian now better than it was some 25 to 30 years ago.
"As we gather today and our prayers have not stopped, I like to ask whether our lives are better than they were 30 years ago. I would also like to ask whether we prayed this much 30 years ago?".
"I was a lot younger 30 years ago but I believe 30 years ago, our WAEC results was accepted all over the world. 30 years ago, our economy was also stronger than it is today. I however don't subscribe that those were our best days because our best days are yet to come", the Governor stated.
He said recently the state embarked upon an audit of properties which showed that out of about a total of 700,000 properties, more properties, 9,186, are being deployed for religious purposes than for schools which was only 4,710 properties.
"The question then, is are we going to pray our way to better education?. Or are we going to teach our students to be better students. Of course, there has been a discussion about our commitment to religion. I have nothing against religion, but given the intensity with which we now pray and the ferocity with which we now set up religious institutions do they correlate to the increase in kidnapping, rape, murder. Are we truly serving God or do we simply have a lot of God and very little good"?
He wondered how a nation can be so prayerful and still face such gloom, adding that in the last index of properties carried out by the State Government, there were only 1,001 industrial properties as against 9,186 religious properties while there were only 16,000 properties being used for commercial activities
"Are the 1,001 industrial properties and 16,000 properties for commercial activities enough to energize our economy in a way that it will respond to the very clear demand of our children for jobs?, the Governor asked.
He said if Nigerians want peace they must not only pray for peace but must work hard for peace because there is a biblical injunction which states that those who look to the heavens for help must help themselves first.
"Ladies and gentlemen, I want to ask if we should be praying for jobs or be praying for riches and miracles in which the biggest cars will come our way whether we work or did not work for it. Because there is a large multitude of people who think that is possible. It is their faith and nobody can question that faith. It is the responsibility of the leaders of our spiritual life to guide all of us that there would be no prosperity without hard work", the Governor declared.
Governor Fashola also made allusions to the Malaysian turnaround when they came to Nigeria to collect palm kernel seeds with which they have done a lot to such that it has become a tree of life not only making palm oil and palm kernel from it but now making diesel from it.
He also talked at length about the Saudi health care story stating that when the Saudi Arabians started building their health care facilities they came to Nigeria to recruit doctors and nurses but some years ago when the Nigerian leader was ailing it was the same Saudi Arabia that he was taken to for treatment which is simply a case of: "A capacity that we built abroad but cannot replicate at home".
He informed that the State Government is determined to succeed in the health sector and that explains why it is building a specialist hospital in Gbagada today where doctors who really want to work and save lives will be able to transfer kidney and replace hearts.
Speaking earlier, the Anglican Arch Bishop of the Lagos Diocese and President of the Synod, His Grace, The Reverend Ephraim Ademowo thanked the Governor for his devotion to duty and life of humility and unreserved commitment to the progress of Lagos State.
"How I wish many Governors in this country are like Governor Fashola. We need more of the likes of Governor Fashola in this country who would take us out of Egypt in to the promised land", he added.
Also speaking the Chancellor of the Lagos Diocese, Justice Adesola Oguntade (Rtd) said he has no doubt in his mind that Governor Babatunde Fashola (SAN) at the completion of his second term in office will still have a role to play in Nigeria.
He said everyone at the event has a very clear idea of what Governor is saying, adding that as it is now, Nigeria is a country that is at war with itself because today there is impunity of the law in the land.
Awards of recognition for service were later presented to the Governor and his wife, Dame Emmanuella Abimbola Fashola by the wife of the Archbishop, Mrs Oluranti Ademowo.