A COMMUNIQUÉ ISSUED AT THE END OF THE SPECIAL ONE-DAY GENERAL SYNOD OF THE CHURCH OF NIGERIA (ANGLICAN COMMUNION) HELD AT AT ST. PAUL’S CHURCH, DENDO ROAD, SOKOTO ON WEDNESDAY 7TH, FEBRUARY, 2007
The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) met in a one day General Synod session on Wednesday 7th, February, 2007 at St. Paul’s Church, Dendo Road, Sokoto in the Diocese of Sokoto with the Archbishop, Metropolitan and Primate of All Nigeria, his Grace the Most Reverend Peter J. Akinola, DD. CON presiding.
The Synod after a prayerful and exhaustive deliberation on matters affecting the church and the society issued the following communiqué.
The Synod is happy with the observable peace, tolerance and mutual co-existence of people of various faith traditions in Sokoto State. This is no doubt the result of outstanding leadership qualities of both the State Governor and the Sultanate. Worthy of special mention is the warm hospitality of both the government and people of Sokoto State towards the successful hosting of this Synod. It is our prayer that God will bless them more abundantly.
The forthcoming Primates’ meeting
The Synod is pleased to hear that the Primate of All Nigeria would be taking part in the meeting of Primates of the Anglican Communion that will hold in Dar es Salaam, February 14th – 20th, 2007. While commending him, the Primate, for his principled stand on the thorny issues plaguing the Communion for some time the Synod is prayerfully looking for the guidance of the Holy Spirit in this particular meeting to the end that Biblical authority will be upheld. The Synod, while still working towards the unity of the Anglican Communion, strongly believes that such unity must be rooted in Biblical orthodoxy.
The 2008 Lambeth Conference
The Synod reaffirms its earlier resolutions on the 2008 Lambeth Conference and stands firmly on the recommendations of the document, “The Road to Lambeth,” as a condition for our participation in this gathering.
Our brethren in CANA
The Synod welcomed the report from the Bishop of CANA (Convocation of Anglicans in North America) and the increasing number of congregations and clergy who are now part of this important missionary initiative of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion). We welcome them as full and constituent members of our Anglican Communion family. We rejoice in their faithful witness during these turbulent times. We are saddened to hear that the profound division in the Episcopal Church and the Diocese of Virginia has now led to the unholy situation where an Episcopal Bishop has initiated costly legal action against churches whose only offence is seeking to remain true to the “faith once for all delivered to the saints.” We assure them that we stand with them and will continue to uphold them with our prayers.
Security in the Nation
While commending the Nigerian police and other security agencies for their efforts in combating the increasing crime wave in the country, the Synod is concerned about the level of assassinations in our society. It calls on the governments of the land to take necessary steps to ensure the security of Nigerian citizens.
The Niger Delta situation
Synod is alarmed that hostage taking is still continuing in the Niger Delta region in spite of the efforts of the present government at redressing the systemic injustices and negligence of the past. While acknowledging the validity of their case, the Synod strongly appeals to the Niger Delta youth to change their strategy as violence and restiveness will never solve the problem. It further calls on government at all levels to ensure that the huge amount of money voted for the development of this region is effectively utilized to serve as a beacon of hope for the people.
The 2006 National Population Census
The Synod notes with concern the controversies that have followed the results of the 2006 Population Census in the country. Synod believes that such controversies should be adequately handled and calls on the Federal Government to ensure that other methods or means of determining the population of a country such as identity cards, accurate recording of births and deaths, are enforced.
The political situation
As we approach the general elections and observe the prevailing unwholesome environment, Synod fervently urges all to pray that God’s will to be done. It further calls on all citizens to be alert and ensure that the democratic process is not sabotaged. Nigerians are encouraged to vote for credible candidates and shun money politics with the totality of our being.
Furthermore Synod calls on the National Assembly to effect amendments of the Electoral Act 2006 to remove all bottlenecks to a peaceful governmental transition, in particular the sections dealing with: a) postponement of elections owing to the death of a candidate and b) the number of days for the revision and display of voters register before elections.
Crisis in Darfur, Sudan
Synod decries the humanitarian crisis in the Darfur region of Sudan and calls on the Federal government of Nigeria to do everything necessary to ensure that Khartoum allows the United Nations peacekeeping force to assist in the situation.
The fuel situation
The Synod is distressed by the return of long queues of vehicles in our fuel stations which was precisely the situation in 1999 when the present administration came into power and calls on the federal Government to urgently resolve the situation before leaving office.
Vote of Confidence
The Synod notes with great delight the visionary, purposeful and dedicated leadership given by our Primate, the Most Reverend Peter J. Akinola. Worthy of special note is his unflinching resolve to uphold the authority of the Word of God against onslaughts from modern apostles of false doctrines. The Synod assures him of our prayers and enthusiastic support.
The Most Revd. Peter J. Akinola, DD, CON
Archbishop, Metropolitan and Primate of All Nigeria